Former Republican Rep. Joe Walsh (Ill.) made the case for President Trump to face a conservative primary challenger in an opinion piece for The New York Times on Wednesday.
Walsh, who has become a vocal critic of the president, wrote that he voted for Trump in 2016 not because he supported the Republican nominee but because “he wasn’t Hillary Clinton.”
“But I soon realized that I couldn’t support him because of the danger he poses to the country, especially the division he sows at every chance, culminating a few weeks ago in his ugly, racist attack on four minority congresswomen,” Walsh wrote.
“The fact is, Mr. Trump is a racial arsonist who encourages bigotry and xenophobia to rouse his base and advance his electoral prospects,” he added.
Walsh wrote that Trump is “unfit for office” and listed issues that should make Republicans view Trump as a liability.
“No matter his flag-hugging, or his military parades, he’s no patriot. In front of the world, he sides with Vladimir Putin over our own intelligence community. That’s dangerous,” the Republican wrote. “He encouraged Russian interference in the 2016 election, and he refuses to take foreign threats seriously as we enter the 2020 election. That’s reckless. For three years, he has been at war with our federal law enforcement and intelligence agencies, as he embraces tyrants abroad and embarrasses our allies. That’s un-American.”
Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld (R) is challenging Trump “from the center,” Walsh noted.
“But the president is more vulnerable to a challenge from the right. I’m on the right, and I’m hugely disappointed that challenge hasn’t yet materialized,” the former lawmaker wrote.
Walsh, who pushed to “restrain executive power and reduce the debt” while serving in Congress, said that the president is not a conservative.
“He’s reckless on fiscal issues; he’s incompetent on the border; he’s clueless on trade; he misunderstands executive power; and he subverts the rule of law. It’s his poor record that makes him most worthy of a primary challenge,” Walsh wrote.
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