‘Your heart tells you that he’s bad for the country’: GOP consultants reveal how much they loathe Trump
Speaking with Vanity Fair’s David Drucker, conservative pollsters and GOP consultants privately admitted that they loathe President Donald Trump but are stuck with him and have no choice but to make the best of a bad situation.
Among the two dozen strategists and consultants who make a living advising GOP candidates, Drucker found few who like Trump because of his bombast and lack of discipline, with one frustrated consultant admitting, “From a personal standpoint, I think this president f*cking sucks. He’s not even a Republican.”
The dilemma for the consultant class is that they have to advise office-holders and potential candidates on how to shape their message when they have Trump as not only the face of the party, but as the leader of a small but rabid following.
“Your heart tells you that he’s bad for the country. Your head looks at polling data among Republican primary voters and sees how popular he is,” explained a Republican strategist who requested anonymity. “It would be malpractice not to advise clients to attach themselves to that popularity.”
One strategist said that candidates who disagree with Trump have to hold their tongues and ride the Trump wave, adding, “It’s really cynical, but so is politics.”
According to former Jeb Bush aide Tim Miller, who was willing to go on the record, compromising their principles sometimes comes with the job
“I worked for candidates who were against gay marriage. I’m gay; I get it. You sometimes have to make choices—no candidate is perfect,” explained Miller. “But this is not just one guy out of 435 voting in [the] House. This is the first time in modern times where the Republican consulting class does not admire their own president in any way. How do you balance that, providing good advice so that the candidates you work for win? It’s tough, and people have taken different routes.”
“I have a hard time taking him seriously; I don’t believe he’s a true conservative,” one pollster added, while another stated “I’m not a fan of Trump, but I don’t hate him. Most of the time, I just shake my head and say: ‘Really?’”
Another said he agrees with Trump on many issues, but parted ways with the president’s methods and bombast.
“I can be supportive of policies the president is backing. It’s the method that concerns me—the tweeting, the things he says, [the] dust-up with [MSNBC host Mika Brzezinski,] those things,” he confessed. “I’ve watched how he just went and ruined the decorum of presidential rhetoric. That’s where my angst with him lies.”
You can read Drucker’s whole report here.