Republican Senator of Arizona Jeff Flake claimed that Donald Trump is in danger of losing the state in November, a state that has been a consistent win for Republican presidential candidates.
Flake is one of several key Republicans yet to give Trump an endorsement and cited immigration as his main obstacle. Trump’s immigration proposals, such as building a wall and forcing Mexico to pay for it, will “not be taken seriously” in a state heavily populated with Latino voters, according to Flake.
In order to become a contender in Arizona, Flake told CBS’ Face The Nation that Trump will have to change his positions on immigration policy, not just his “tone and tenor.” He argued that Hispanics have upped their urgency to vote in November and that Hillary Clinton could possibly carry Arizona.
Arizona has gone to the GOP the past five presidential elections, and only two Democrats have won the state since 1948. Bill Clinton in 1996, and Harry Truman in 1948.
Flake also commented that Trump should apologize for his comments regarding Humayun Khan’s mother, whom he insinuated was silent at the DNC because she was not allowed to speak. He also criticized Trump’s positions on NATO, his proposed Muslim ban, and free trade.
While he did not rule out eventually giving his endorsement, Flake remains unconvinced after his colleague Mike Pence’s pitch to officially support Trump. “If you could govern in private, I guess that would be OK, but you can’t,” Flake complained.
Flake also referenced Trumps’s comments on Mexico sending rapists as immigrants and his spat with a Mexican judge over Trump U. He added, “You can’t expect to win Arizona when you make statements like that.”
Polling averages currently show Trump in a dead heat with Clinton in Arizona, up 43.3 to Clinton’s 43.0.
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