Asa Hutchinson has been critical of Donald Trump since he announced his candidacy for the 2024 Republican Party presidential primaries. Even after dropping out in January, Hutchinson continues to oppose the former President – refusing to endorse him in the November election.

Who Is Asa Hutchinson?

Asa Hutchinson is a 73-year-old attorney and politician. In 1982, he became the nation’s youngest U.S. attorney after being appointed by then-President Ronald Reagan at just 31 years old. He has been in politics for the past four decades.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

He served four years in the U.S. House of Representatives, two roles under President George W. Bush, and was Governor of Arkansas between 2015 and 2023. He dropped out of the Republican primary on January 16.

Hutchinson Pens Op-Ed In USA Today

On March 18, Hutchinson published an op-ed in USA Today, reaffirming his stance against Donald Trump. He criticized Republican leaders for ‘clicking their heels in obedience to the victor and presumptive nominee,’ but stopped short of doing so himself.

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“I have not endorsed Donald Trump for president, and I will not do so,” Hutchinson wrote – confirming what most of us already assumed. He admitted that it was a ‘difficult position to take’ because of his respect for the Republican Party, but it’s the stance he feels is right.

Believes In The Republican Party, But Not Donald Trump

Hutchinson praised himself as ‘instrumental’ in building the GOP in Arkansas, and said he ‘became a Republican as a young lawyer because of the conservative policies advocated by Ronald Reagan.’ But Trump is redefining the GOP – and he doesn’t like it.

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“I have a long history of believing that principle matters, character counts and civility should be valued,” he wrote. “Regretfully, Donald Trump has redefined the GOP in his image and has put personal ego above the common good.”

Criticizes Trump For Supporting Vladimir Putin Over Ukraine

According to Hutchinson, Trump has made the Republican Party the ‘party that likes Russian President Vladimir Putin over the freedom fighters in Ukraine.’ Instead of conservatism, Trump is committed to isolationism – highlighted by ‘abandoning NATO.’

Source: Wikimedia/Presidential Press and Information Office

He also criticized Trump for his allegiance to ‘economic protectionism’ through the various tariffs he imposed on both enemies and allies. “These ideas are not Republican principles but anathema to the success story conservative leaders have built over the last 50 years,” he wrote.

Does Hutchinson Think Trump Is A Threat To Democracy?

Hutchinson alluded to a question he gets asked often—whether or not he believes Trump is a ‘threat to democracy.’ Many Trump critics, including President Joe Biden, have taken that stance, but Hutchinson stopped short of going that far.

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“I am not good at predicting the future, but we can learn from history and we should take heed when politicians tell us what they are going to do,” Hutchinson wrote – a warning of what might come if Trump earns another four years in the Oval Office.

References The Jan. 6 Attack On The U.S. Capitol

While he didn’t directly call Trump a threat to democracy, he did call the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol a threat to democracy – and criticized Trump out for his attempts to call the attack an act of patriotism.

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“When I saw the attack on law enforcement, the rule of law and Congress itself, I said he should never again lead our country or our party,” he wrote – pointing out that there were plenty of Republicans who said the same three years ago, but have since ‘made peace’ with Trump.

Says Trump Doesn’t Believe In Checks And Balances

Not only does Hutchinson think Trump is undermining democracy by ‘defending the actions of that dark day,’ he also believes Trump is quite literally ignoring the checks and balances that make the U.S. government so powerful.

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“He advocates for an all-powerful executive branch that can ignore Congress and the courts,” he argued. While he admits this country needs a strong leader, he also understands the importance of ‘healthy friction’ to ‘properly restrain government.’

Not Voting For Trump, Not Voting For Biden

Hutchinson also thought it was important to make something very clear. While he refuses to endorse and vote for Donald Trump this November, that doesn’t mean he’s voting for Joe Biden – citing his weak border policies, poor economic record, and slow growth energy policy.

Source: Wikimedia/The White House

That said, Hutchinson still believes in the Republican Party’s principles. “So, I am a Republican who won’t be supporting our presumptive nominee,” he said, hoping that he’s not the only one come November.

Nikki Haley Refuses To Endorse Trump

Asa Hutchinson isn’t the only former GOP primary candidate to not endorse Trump. Nikki Haley, who was Trump’s final remaining candidate just a few weeks ago, has suggested that she won’t vote for or endorse Trump this year.

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She officially suspended her campaign on March 6 following a poor showing on Super Tuesday. She did, however, become the first female to win a Republican primary when she received 62% of the vote in the District of Columbia.

Mike Pence Won’t Be Voting For Trump Either

Even Trump’s former running mate and Vice President, Mike Pence, is refusing to endorse Trump this November. He confirmed this on March 15 during an appearance on Fox News.

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“It should come as no surprise that I will not be endorsing Donald Trump this year,” Pence said. While he is proud of what the Trump Administration did in their four years in office, Pence has ‘made it clear there were profound differences between me and President Trump.’

Other Notable Republicans Not Endorsing Trump

Of course, that’s just the beginning of the long list of Republicans who aren’t giving in to Trump’s values. Former Vice President Cheney, former Attorney General William Barr, and former National Security Advisor John Bolton are among those not voting for Trump.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

Six current Republican Senators, eight current Republican Representatives, and three current Governors have been open about their opposition to Trump’s policies. Tomi Lahren, Meghan McCain, Michael Reagan, and Rupert Murdoch are on that list too.

Many Voters Are Undecided On How They’ll Vote

A new poll by Reuters shows just how close this year’s presidential election will be. As of right now, Biden has a slight advantage over Trump, with 39% of respondents saying they would vote for Biden and 38% saying they would vote for Trump.

Source: Joaquín Corbalán via Canva

With that said, 11% of the respondents are planning on voting for a third candidate, 5% aren’t interested in voting at all, and 7% are currently undecided. That leaves a lot of room for either Biden, Trump, or someone else to step in and create chaos.