GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - The call for Republican elected officials to distance themselves from GOP nominee Donald Trump has hit close to home following the second presidential debate.
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump met on stage and one of the first topics up for debate was the 2005 recording of Trump saying disturbing things about women. The words on that tape caused Mark Gladney, Democratic candidate in South Mississippi's fourth Congressional district, to lash out at the GOP nominee.
"If you watch the debate and watch his demeanor, it's indicative of who he is," said Gladney.
Gladney's opponent, incumbent Republican Steven Palazzo, supports Trump. And Gladney said in no uncertain terms that Palazzo should distance himself from Trump.
"This is a time when I look at our current representative and I ask him to come with me and remove his endorsement of Donald Trump and remove himself as Chairman of the Vets for Trump Committee in Mississippi," Gladney said.
The Democratic candidate for President, Hillary Clinton, has had to answer serious questions about her past. Deleted e-mails and other issues have Clinton carrying baggage with many voters. Gladney admits voters are having to choose between two candidates with highly unfavorable ratings.
"I will admit that both candidates are flawed. I think that's what everyone would say across the board. We need to start holding people accountable." Gladney observed.
A statement from Congressman Palazzo indicated that while he didn't approve of Trump's comments, he was inclined to forgive him.
"As Donald Trump said at last night's debate, what he said was embarrassing, and he has apologized for his remarks," Rep. Palazzo said. "Our country has much bigger things to worry about than comments Donald Trump made more than a decade ago. Trump has tapped into the very real frustration many Americans feel after eight years of Barack Obama. The way the liberal media and the establishment have blown this issue out of proportion shows they will go to any length to ensure Donald Trump does not become the next president and to take attention away from their failed candidate in Hillary Clinton. Sadly, I fear some are taking the bait. I believe Trump has apologized sincerely for his remarks, and we should all move on and focus on the things Americans care about like our national security, paying down the debt, getting our economy moving, and making America great again."
Plenty of Republicans are speaking out against their party's nominee. Here is a list, compiled via media and social media reports, of the politicians who recently disavowed the Republican nominee and others who reaffirmed their disapproval, organized by state:
- Alabama: Rep. Martha Roby, Rep. Bradley Byrne, Gov. Robert Bentley
- Alaska: Sen. Dan Sullivan, Sen. Lisa Murkowski
- Arizona: Sen. John McCain
- Colorado: Sen. Cory Gardner, Rep. Mike Coffman
- Idaho: Sen. Mike Crapo
- Illinois: Sen. Mark Kirk
- Maine: Sen. Susan Collins, Rep. Bruce Poliquin
- Missouri: Rep. Rodney Davis, Rep. Ann Wagner
- Nebraska: Sen. Deb Fischer, Sen. Ben Sasse
- Nevada: Rep. Joe Heck
- New Hampshire: Sen. Kelly Ayotte
- Ohio: Gov. John Kasich, Sen. Rob Portman
- South Dakota: Gov. Dennis Daugaard, Sen. John Thune
- Utah: Gov. Gary Herbert, Sen. Mike Lee, Rep. Jason Chaffetz
- Virginia: Rep. Barbara Comstock