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Fournier: I’d Support Her Over ‘Ill-Suited’ Trump, But Hillary Will Have a ‘Secretive, Lack of Transparency, Dishonest Presidency’


On Tuesday’s broadcast of CNN’s “The Lead,” National Journal Senior Political Columnist Ron Fournier argued that Democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s presidency would be “a secretive, lack of transparency, dishonest presidency.” But that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is “ill-suited” for the office and that if the election was binary, he would have to support Clinton.

Fournier discussed his column, “There’s Simply No Equivalence,” which is subtitled, “Hillary Clinton has her problems, but Donald Trump is unfit for the presidency.”

Fournier said that both Clinton and Trump are “very flawed, perhaps the most flawed two candidates — certainly the most disliked candidates we’ve had in modern political history.” And that he “concluded for myself that her enormous lack of credibility, that she’s earned, is outweighed by his outrageous lack of temperament.”

When asked if this means he’s going to vote for Clinton, Fournier answered, “If it is a binary choice, there’s no way I could vote for Donald Trump. He is ill-suited for the presidency. … If it was a binary choice, it would have to be Hillary Clinton, but it’s not. So then you get into the complicated thing, do I vote for a — and by I I don’t mean just me, but all voters. Do you do one of the third party candidates? If you’re doing that, I’m one of these people who won’t tell a voter you’re throwing away a vote. Don’t buy that. The only vote you throw away is one you don’t cast. But do be conscious of the fact, that depending on what state you live in, like I’ll be living in Michigan. If I vote for a third party candidate, I could be helping Donald Trump. I don’t want to do anything that would help Donald Trump. I can’t see Donald Trump being president of this country.”

He added of Clinton, “Well, if a campaign is a test of a presidency, which they are, she’s going to run a secretive, lack of transparency, dishonest presidency. The problem with the Clintons, for all their strengths, and this has been a problem going back to the days of Arkansas, where I covered them, right. They’re so committed to their righteousness that they don’t think the rules apply to them. So, if all that this election’s about is winning, well, they’re in position to win it, because they’re up against a guy who most Americans [don’t] think is qualified to be president. … But the problem is, how do you lead, how do you change this country in the way it has to change, how do you do the kind of things that she’s going to be promising if 11% of the American public trusts you. And that low trust number, she has earned, in the way that she’s handled Benghazi, and the way that she’s handled the emails.”

Fournier also said a Trump administration would be “bigoted. It’d be sexist. He would punish his enemies. He would incite violence on people who protest against him. It would be lacking of any understanding of policy, or any interest in policy.” And that a Trump presidency is “unthinkable.” and he is, the remarkable thing, when you look at the list of things that have made people raise their eyebrows, it is just one after another after another.

Fournier concluded that he hasn’t decided how he’ll vote, and “I don’t want to vote for either one of them, but I — this decision I’ve made: I’m not going to do anything that helps Donald Trump.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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