Dozens of Republican lawmakers publicly rescinded their endorsements over the weekend, because that’s what you do after a tape of your nominee bragging about sexual assault drops. But the constituents of many of these Republicans weren’t happy at all.
After South Dakota Senator John Thune called on Trump to drop out and let his running mate Mike Pence take over the ticket, the backlash was swift and severe. According to the Argus Leader (a truly great name for a newspaper), some in South Dakota were calling for Thune to resign because of his anti-Trump comments. “I think he needs to go about the people of South Dakota’s wishes,” Bob Guhin, who created a Facebook group calling for Thune to get out of the race, told the Leader. “And yes, what Trump said was bad, but it’s not his job to tell him to drop out. He should have kept quiet about it.”
So it should come as no surprise that, only five days after Trump’s comments first surfaced, Republicans are already running back to him.
To be fair, of these Republicans, only Byrne officially said he was withdrawing his support, though others like Thune called for Trump to abandon his bid. But it’s clear that some Republicans were actually unprepared to deal with the impact these defections would have on base voters, who are wreaking havoc down-ballot across the country. Some now apparently believe it’s better to hold on to Trump and hope for the best.