This article was written by Michael Barbaro, Ashley Parker, and Jonathan Martin, and published by the New York Times.
From Michigan to Louisiana to California on Friday, rank-and-file Republicans expressed mystification, dismissal and contempt over the instructions that their party’s most high-profile leaders were urgently handing down to them: Reject and defeat Donald J. Trump.
Their angry reactions, in the 24 hours since Mitt Romney and John McCain urged millions of voters to cooperate in a grand strategy to undermine Mr. Trump’s candidacy, have captured the seemingly inexorable force of a movement that still puzzles the Republican elite and now threatens to unravel the party they hold dear.
In interviews, even lifelong Republicans who cast a ballot for Mr. Romney four years ago rebelled against his message and plan. “I personally am disgusted by it — I think it’s disgraceful,” said Lola Butler, 71, a retiree from Mandeville, La., who voted for Mr. Romney in 2012. “You’re telling me who to vote for and who not to vote for? Please.”
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