KANSAS HILLS, KANSAS — In the wake of the now infamous “Trump Tapes,” in which alleged billionaire and Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is caught speaking about women and sexual assault in ways that have been roundly criticized by people all over the political spectrum, State Representative Tom Thompaulsen has rescinded his endorsement of the reality-TV star. However, Thompaulsen told attendees at a prayer breakfast this week that he wanted to make it “very clear” to them that he is not rescinding his endorsement of Trump’s policies, or even most of his rhetoric.
“I am not supporting Donald Trump for president anymore,” Thompaulsen told his supporters, “but I am still supporting most of his ideas, initiatives, goals, and even the better part of his rhetoric.”
Rep. Thompaulsen said that it’s important for voters to remember that “Republicans have been in bed with racists for years” and that “Trump’s implosion shouldn’t gut our Southern Strategy.” Instead, Thompaulsen reiterated that it’s possible to shun Trump while still embracing everything he stands for.
“I may be publicly distancing myself from Donald Trump the man,” Rep. Thompaulsen said, “but I am not distancing myself from the underlying rhetoric. I am not distancing myself from the misogyny, I still believe in the state having a say in abortion. I’m not denouncing xenophobia because I still want to deport all the illegals and build a massive wall at the border. And I’m not rebuking the idea that we should toss the First Amendment out and prohibit Muslims from entering the country. It’s just Donald Trump the alleged human being I’m trying to avoid being compared to and with.”
Expression a wistful sorrow, Thompaulsen said he “dreamed of a candidate that could be as fun to watch” as Trump but “still knew how to do racism and xenophobia the Republican way.”
“It’s like Donald went and forgot he could blow dog whistles to racists and misogynists,” Thompaulsen said, “by talking about Welfare Queens and feminazis. If he’d had the ability to couch and temper his divisive rhetoric in more patriotic prose, that would have gone a long way, too.”
Ultimately, Thompaulsen says that he could live with Trump becoming president because he shares so many of the core beliefs that Trump does, but he also has responsibilities outside his loyalty to the Republican presidential nominee, whomever it is.
“I have to distance myself from Trump so that I can keep using similar, but toned-down rhetoric. I need to get elected, and I have a responsibility to my political career,” Thompaulsen said, “because if I’m not elected, I don’t get paid. And if I’m not paid, then I might have to go get another job, and if I can’t find another job I might have to go and take welfare assistance while I get back on my feet. And I’m sorry, I’m just not wired to take taxpayer money for no work…unless I’m an elected official, naturally.”
The Trump campaign was not available for comment.
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