Mike Pence, a former US vice president, has criticised Donald Trump’s dining with a Holocaust denial white nationalist and the rapper Kanye West.
Pence is one of many Republicans who are calling for the ex-US president to apologize for his “profoundly flawed judgment”.
The group, which included Mr Trump, Ye, and Nick Fuentes (a far-right activist with antisemitic views and white nationalist views), met last week in Mar-a-Lago.
On Monday night, Vice President Mike Pence spoke out to NewsNation, saying that Trump had wrongly given a white nationalist and antisemite, as well as a Holocaust denier, a place at the table. He should apologize for this.
“And he should denounce these individuals and their hateful speech, without qualification.”
However, Mr. Pence maintained that Donald Trump isn’t antisemitic nor racist and said he wouldn’t have been vice president under him if so.
Bill Cassidy from Louisiana was also critical of Mr Trump. He said that “President Trump hosting antisemites racists for dinner encourages antisemites to be racist.”
These attitudes are impure and should be avoided.
Rick Scott, a Florida senator, said that there was no place for antisemitism and white supremacy within the Republican Party. Period.”
Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a long-standing Trump ally, stated: “Yeah. The meeting was bad.
“He shouldn’t have done that.”
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He said that there is a double standard on this type of stuff, and that it doesn’t matter for his political future.
Missouri senator Josh Hawley stated that Mr Trump could have dinner with anyone he wishes, but he wouldn’t have dinner (Mr Fuentes). I’ll say it that way.”
Chris Christie, the Governor of New Jersey, told The New York Times that it was just another example of Donald Trump’s “abject lack of judgment”.
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Asa Hutchinson, the former Arkansas Governor, told CNN that it was “very troubling” and added that “it shouldn’t happen.”
Others, such as Kevin McCarthy, House GOP leader, and Mitch McConnell (Senate Minority Leader), remained silent.
Trump claimed he didn’t know Mr Fuentes before the meeting, but he hasn’t denounced Mr Fuentes’ views or that of their dinner companion Ye who has made antisemitic remarks in recent weeks.
The Republican Party is still trying to figure out how to deal with Mr Trump.
While many blame Trump for the party’s poor performance in the midterm elections, they also recognize that Trump, who announced recently that he would be running again for the presidency 2024, is still very popular with his base.