An Iowa state senator on Tuesday became the first elected official to leave the Republican Party over Donald Trump, in yet another sign of turmoil within the party over its presumptive nominee's racist tirade against an Indiana-born federal judge who is of Mexican descent.
State Sen. David Johnson (R) likened Donald Trump’s rhetoric and candidacy to Adolf Hitler, calling his racist remarks and “judicial jihad” as the final straw.
"I will not stand silent if the party of Lincoln and the end of slavery buckles under the racial bias of a bigot," Johnson said, according to the Des Moines Register.
In an interview with The Guardian, Johnson said he was put off by Trump's "campaign to reality TV and large crowds and divisive language and all the trappings of a good show for those who like that kind of approach, and that’s what happened in the 1930s in Germany."
He added: “I think that’s all I need to say, but certainly the fascists took control of Germany under the same types of strategies.”
The senator, who represents a portion of northwestern Iowa, said that while he changed his voter registration to "no party," he would not be voting for presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in November.
"Mark me down as Never Trump," Johnson said.
Republicans on Capitol Hill are scrambling to condemn Trump’s racist comments, yet, somehow, nearly all are still standing by him as their party’s presidential nominee. Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), one of the most vulnerable senators up for re-election, became the first Republican member of Congress to rescind his endorsement on Tuesday.
Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.