Wednesday on NBC’s “Today,” Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) revealed he didn’t vote for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election and said those conservative Republicans that had done so made a “Faustian bargain” by voting for Trump.
Partial transcript as follows:
LAUER: Senator, let me test your newfound freedom. I know you disagree with her in every policy facing this country. But in terms of protecting democracy, protecting respect for the office of the presidency and protecting our image abroad — is it possible in your mind to consider that it would have been better had Hillary Clinton won in the election?
FLAKE: I talk in the book that I wrote “Conscience of a Conservative,” borrowing from Barry Goldwater’s title, earlier this year, that we kind of made a Faustian bargain with this president. that we could excuse the behavior and everything, simply because we could get some conservative judges.
LAUER: Would it be better if she had won the election?
FLAKE: Well I can you no president, Democrat or Republican, in recent memory, has exhibited the behavior that this president has. So, you know, I am a Republican. I’m a conservative. I would love to have a Republican president. But not at any cost. I didn’t vote for this president last November. I didn’t vote for … Secretary Clinton, either.
LAUER: Second thoughts on that?
FLAKE: I can tell you, I’m not happy with the direction we’re going.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor