The pressure on Sen. Roy Blunt to more aggressively respond to GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump’s taped comments is growing.
Trump vowed not to quit after audio and video of a lewd conversation surfaced Friday.
Blunt, in a close race for re-election to the Senate, issued a statement late Friday that rebuked the nominee, calling Trump’s remarks inappropriate. And today, in a comment tweeted by Washington Post reporter David Weigel, Blunt said he would still vote for Trump:
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Whether Blunt can stick with that posture may become more clear in the coming days. Already, GOP Rep. Ann Wagner of St. Louis has withdrawn her support of Trump. The list of Republicans calling for Trump’s replacement is growing.
And the Democrats, including Democratic Senate nominee Jason Kander, are turning up the heat:
This afternoon, American Bridge, a liberal group, issued a statement:
“Today, Roy Blunt has proven that he supports everything that Donald Trump embodies — crude sexism that harms women and is a danger to those around him. Blunt's decision to stand with Donald Trump — after knowing all that we know about him — is disqualifying.”
Blunt led the effort in 2012 to force Todd Akin off the Missouri ballot after Akin made controversial comments about rape. Some Republicans remain angry at Blunt for his role in that race.
Blunt eventually supported Akin, a point the Kander campaign pointed out Saturday.
"”In 2012, Senator Blunt stood with Todd Akin after his horrible comments,” said a statement from Kander spokeswoman Anne Feldman. “It’s not surprising that Senator Blunt is doing the same thing with Donald Trump now even though Republicans across Missouri and the country are withdrawing their support.”
Interestingly, some are warning Blunt not to step away from Trump:
Others are issuing statements. None has yet called for Trump to step aside:
Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan.: “The comments by Mr. Trump are abhorrent. I am glad he has apologized, and it will be up to him to work to earn the trust of the American people on November 8.”
Gov. Sam Brownback, R-Kan.: “The passage of time does not change the unacceptable language used by Donald Trump. While he has apologized, his statements remain demeaning, inappropriate and unacceptable.”
Rep. Kevin Yoder, R-Kan.: “As a father to two daughters I found these remarks disgusting and offensive and he was right to apologize.”
Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan.: