On Monday, former Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) penned an urgent plea in the Washington Post, calling on his old colleagues to hold President Donald Trump accountable for his abuse of power in the Ukraine scandal, and saying, “there’s still time to save your souls.”
“Two years ago I stood in the Senate chamber and said: ‘There are times when we must risk our careers in favor of our principles,'” wrote Flake.
Although Flake amassed a deeply conservative voting record and backed most of Trump’s agenda in office, he was one of the sharpest critics of the president’s conduct and ethics among elected GOP officials — which contributed to his decision to retire.
“In my case, I had not supported the president’s election. One year into his presidency, I knew that I could not support his reelection,” wrote Flake. “While I had hoped that I could still run for reelection to the Senate in 2018 as someone who would help to provide a check on the president’s worst impulses, it soon became apparent that this was not what Republican primary voters in my state were looking for. Whatever reservations they might have had when they voted for Donald Trump, one year into his presidency they wanted a senator who was all in.”
“Our country will have more presidents,” Flake continued. “But principles, well, we get just one crack at those. For those who want to put America first, it is critically important at this moment in the life of our country that we all, here and now, do just that.”
“Trust me when I say that you can go elsewhere for a job. But you cannot go elsewhere for a soul,” Flake warned.