ST. GEORGE – Utah Gov. Gary Herbert told media Thursday that he intends to vote for Donald Trump this November.
The governor’s remarks came during his monthly news conference on KUED when he was asked who would receive his vote.
“I’m voting for Donald Trump,” Herbert said.
Herbert had supported Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in his bid for the Republican’s presidential nomination. However, after Cruz dropped from the race earlier this year the governor said he would support whomever ending up being the GOP nominee.
The governor also mentioned his longtime friendship with Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, Fox 13 News reports. Herbert appeared a little more energetic about Pence, who is Trump’s vice presidential pick.
“I think he’s a great individual,” Herbert said. “I think he’ll bring some stability.”
Herbert said he likes Trump for his position on states’ rights and his ability to pick nominees for the U.S. Supreme Court.
As for Trump’s rather unfiltered comments that tend to offend this or that group while on the campaign trail, Herbert said he wasn’t an apologist for the presidential candidate. Some people like what Trump has to say and how he says it, others don’t, he said.
Fox 13 News also reported that Hebert hopes Trump will mellow once in office, saying, “How you campaign is not necessarily how you govern.”
Utah Democratic Party Chair Peter Corroon issued the following statement in response to Herbert’s announcement:
“Unbelievable. Shameful. Appalling. Those are just some of the words that came to mind when I heard Gary Herbert confirm his plan to vote for Donald Trump in November. Governor Herbert has shown once again that he prioritizes politics and his own party over what is best for the people of Utah. When he publicly voices support for a man who has disrespected so many groups of people, even calling for a ban on Muslim migration; a man who would be a disaster for Utah’s economy and cost us up to 95,000 jobs; a man who jokes about gun violence against his opponent; a man who is so clearly unfit and unqualified to be president, Utahns know Gary Herbert is not looking out for their best interests.
“Utah Democrats agree with Mitt Romney on this one: with Trump, ‘the prospects for a safe and prosperous future are greatly diminished … Donald Trump lacks the temperament to be president … Dishonesty is Trump’s hallmark … He is a phony and a fraud … If his plans were ever implemented, the country would sink into a prolonged recession.’”
“The choice this November could not be clearer, and that’s why I feel confident about our chances to turn Utah blue for the first time in decades. Unlike Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton believes that we’re stronger together, that we should have an economy that works for everyone – not just those at the top. She’ll be talking about this later today in Warren, Michigan, and I encourage Utahns to listen to the positive messages coming from national and local Democrats this fall.”
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