Senator Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) took shots at President Donald Trump during an appearance at the
Forbes’ Magazine “30 under 30” conference in Boston on Monday.
Just days after forcing Senate Republicans and Trump to have the FBI open an investigation into sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, Flake, who is retiring after this year, spoke to young voters about why he’s not a fan of Trump.
“I could never warm to the president,” he said. “Long before he ran, he talked about President Obama not being a citizen. I thought that itself is disqualifying. You cannot do that.”
Indeed, Trump frequently pushed birtherism during Obama’s presidency, even hypocritically citing anonymous sources as proof of his claims, only to be humiliated by Obama himself when he released his long form birth certificate and mocked Trump during the White House Correspondent’s Dinner.
Flake also took issue with Trump’s attacks on the late Senator John McCain.
“Then he talked about John McCain in a derogatory way, then talked about Mexicans in a derogatory way,” he said. “I just think we’ve got to do better than that. We can’t refer to our opponents, political opponents on the other side of the aisle as losers and clowns. We have too big of issues to solve in this country than to just be partisan all the time.”
Flake went on to call upon young voters to get involved and advised his own party to expand the tent instead of pandering to their shrinking base. He also said that Republicans need to return to decency and defended compromise, a word that most Republicans despise right now.
“Stand for your principles, yes,” he concluded. “But understand that compromise is not a dirty word.”
Here’s the video via YouTube.
Flake has not ruled out challenging Trump for the Republican nomination in 2020, and his remarks in Boston certainly seem to indicate that he is positioning himself as an alternative for his party. If so, he’s an alternative that many Americans may welcome.
Featured Image: YouTube screenshot