Donald Trump’s extraordinary refusal to endorse two of his own party’s leaders and his belittling of the Muslim family of a slain U.S. soldier has led some influential Republican officials to break with him. But in Georgia, his controversial remarks have been met with a wall of silence from most of his highest-profile supporters.
Many of Georgia’s leading elected officials, who have all pledged to support their party’s nominee, were mum this week as Trump ratcheted up his war with the GOP’s political establishment. And the politicians who did comment stopped short of rebuking him for his recent controversial comments, including a call for Russia to cyberattack Democratic operatives.
Consider the statement from U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, who is seeking a third term in November, on whether he stands by Trump’s criticism of Khizr Khan, the father of the U.S. Army captain killed in Iraq in 2004. Isakson extolled the younger Khan’s “ultimate sacrifice” — but made no mention of Trump.
One exception was Republican U.S. Sen. David Perdue, Trump’s top surrogate in Georgia, who through a spokeswoman continued to defend the GOP nominee.
“No one will do more for our troops, veterans and their families than Donald Trump,” the spokeswoman said, “and this is just another media distraction spun by Hillary Clinton, as we all agree Captain Khan is an American hero.”
Georgia Democrats slammed Isakson and others for refusing to condemn the GOP nominee. Joe Keen, a former U.S. Army infantry officer who chairs the state party’s veterans caucus, said the GOP’s silence “is an insult to those who have fought for our country.”