After denouncing Trump, Rep. Stewart says he will vote for Republican nominee (video)

ST. GEORGE – During an informal meet-and-greet along with other Republican candidates in Southern Utah Wednesday, Rep. Chris Stewart said that, despite having previously called for Donald Trump to step down, at the end of the day, he intends to vote for the nominee.

Rep. Chris Stewart, representing Utah's 2nd Congressional District, said he will vote for presidential Republican nominee Donald Trump despite having previously asking him to withdraw from the race in the wake of the release of an 11-year-old recording of Trump making crude comments about women, Santa Clara, Utah, Oct. 26, 2016 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News
Rep. Chris Stewart, representing Utah’s 2nd Congressional District, said he will vote for presidential Republican nominee Donald Trump despite having previously asking him to withdraw from the race in the wake of the release of an 11-year-old recording of Trump making crude comments about women, Santa Clara, Utah, Oct. 26, 2016 | Photo by Mori Kessler, St. George News

“I’ve actually struggled with that, like a lot of Utahns, because some of the things Mr. Trump said, I have such a real problem with,” Stewart told St. George News. “But at the end of the day, our choice is Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. These other candidates are just not going to win. There really is a binary choice, and given that choice, it’s very clear to me what is better for our country.”

“It’s very clear that Donald Trump is a better choice than Hillary Clinton,” he said. “At the end of the day, I will be voting for Donald Trump.”

Following the release of a video on Oct. 8 that had an audio recording of Trump making crude remarks about women, several prominent Utah Republicans denounced Trump. Gov. Gary Herbert said he wouldn’t vote for Trump and Rep. Jason Chaffetz became the first member of Congress to retract his endorsement.

Sen. Mike Lee and Rep. Mia Love also said they would not vote for Trump, while Sen. Orrin Hatch and Rep. Rob Bishop, although denouncing the comments, said they will still be voting for Trump nonetheless.

In a statement issued following the release of the video, Stewart joined other Republican voices calling for Trump to “step aside.”

I’m incredibly disappointed in our party’s candidate. And, unlike the Democrats who have proven completely unwilling to hold Secretary Clinton accountable for her illegal activities that endangered our national security, I am willing to hold Mr. Trump accountable. I am therefore calling for him to step aside and to allow Mike Pence to lead our party.

That position has since changed. Prior to deciding to cast a vote for Trump, Stewart was undecided, and mentioned staring at a ballot on his desk and wondering how he should vote.

Republican presidential candidate, businessman Donald Trump speaks at his caucus night rally, West Des Moines, Iowa, Feb. 1, 2016 | AP Photo by Kiichiro Sato, St. George News
Republican presidential candidate, businessman Donald Trump speaks at his caucus night rally, West Des Moines, Iowa, Feb. 1, 2016 | AP Photo by Kiichiro Sato, St. George News

“At that time, I was so disappointed in Trump that I did ask him to step down and did think Mike Pence should be out leader, but that didn’t happen,” he said. “Mr. Trump is still the nominee. He’s still the person running against Hillary Clinton.”

Stewart said he understands that many people don’t approve of Trump and may lean toward a third party or independent candidate. While he said he understands and appreciates that stance, he nonetheless urges voters to support Trump.

“The math on this is pretty simple – that Donald Trump needs your vote in order to counter Hillary Clinton.”

Stewart isn’t the only one who has decided to vote for Trump after having declared otherwise. Chaffetz announced over Twitter Thursday that he will vote for the nominee as well. However, the withdrawl of endorsement remained.

“I will not defend or endorse @realDonaldTrump, but I am voting for him,” Chafftez said in the tweet. “(Hillary Clinton) is that bad. (Hillary Clinton) is bad for the USA.”

Stewart has withheld any endorsement of Trump, yet sees him as the best possible route to prevent Clinton from taking the White House.

Email: mkessler@stgnews.com

Twitter: @MoriKessler

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

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9 Comments

  • Brian October 27, 2016 at 7:26 am

    I can’t and won’t just vote AGAINST someone. I have to vote FOR someone, and that can’t be Trump (and wouldn’t in a million lifetimes vote for Hillary).

    My voting criteria is pretty simple. The person has to be: good, wise, honest, someone that will act with integrity, and guided by / defender of the Constitution.

    Trump is 0/5. Hillary is 0/5. Very simple choice.

    So I’ll vote for Evan McMullin. From what I can tell he is 5/5. There are accusations that he’s a globalist plant, but I see no actual evidence of that.

    If McMullin had no chance in Utah I’d hold my nose and vote for Gary Johnson, but only to try to get the Libertarians to 3% in the popular vote (then they automatically get on the ballet in the next election) or 5% (then they get official election funding next time, bringing them on more level ground with R & D).

    My question for Stewart, Chaffetz, and others is this: If your ONLY criteria for a candidate is that they will stop the other, worse candidate, then what WON’T you be willing to vote for? As long as the other side is more evil you’ll support anything. So where does it stop?

  • Not_So_Much October 27, 2016 at 7:49 am

    Of course, what else would anyone expect? The GOP is getting concerned and attempting to get all the good boys and girls in line. Think for yourself, look at all the candidates and then vote for the one who will best lead the country for at least the 4 years. If you want the party, the whole party and nothing but the party, Stewart is your guy.

  • native born new mexican October 27, 2016 at 9:04 am

    I can not vote for either one. I have to live with myself and a vote for either of them is not something I can live with. What a statement it would make if no one voted on this because the choices are just too unacceptable. Gary Johnson was the governor of New Mexico. He did some worth while things. He is certainly better than Trump or Clinton but he is not really my choice either.

  • Michael October 27, 2016 at 9:42 am

    Follow Trump’s astounding recommendation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oUIe_Kwaj4

  • theone October 27, 2016 at 10:09 am

    We will never break the cycle of (vote for the lesser evil) until voters actually vote their conscience. Getting in line because Reps. like Stewart placate to his constituents is the problem. If we want to be representative to a true republic, then vote your conscience and break this cycle.

    Write-in……………………………………….

  • Bob October 27, 2016 at 12:08 pm

    Trump is a wild card in regards to the utah mormon vote. Will the mormons go low enough to rubber stamp the R candidate this time around? any bets? it’ll be interesting

    • .... October 27, 2016 at 9:21 pm

      Awwww poor little Bob always upset with the Mormons. .what’s wrong cry baby did they hurt your feelings. LOL ! put on your tin foil hat and go up on top of your house and look for UFO’s

  • Rob October 27, 2016 at 11:57 pm

    Very disappointing… Rep. Stewart may have lost my vote over this, but Trump certainly didn’t gain it.

  • dhamilton2002 October 28, 2016 at 7:28 am

    This is just a confirmation of the reality that politics and party are more important to Mr. Stewart that what is best for Utah and our country. He certainly will not be getting my vote. Time for a change!

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