The speechwriter who penned the Republican National Convention remarks of Pat Smith, whose son was killed in the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya, now says he may vote for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
In her RNC speech, Smith said that Clinton deserves to be in jail and cannot be trusted to lead the country after her son, Sean Smith, and three other Americans were killed while Clinton was secretary of state.
“The tragedy in Benghazi is not about America. I blame Hillary Clinton. I blame Hillary Clinton personally for the death of my son,” she said in her speech. “If Clinton can’t give us the truth, why should we give her the presidency?”
Even though he drafted those words, Richard Cross, who has worked for House Republicans and volunteered his speechwriting services in Cleveland, said he can’t vote for GOP nominee Donald Trump.
“Weeks after the end of the 2016 GOP convention, I am confronted by an inconvenient fact: Despite what I wrote in that nationally televised speech about Hillary Clinton, I may yet have to vote for her because of the epic deficiencies of my own party’s nominee,” he wrote in an op-ed in The Baltimore Sun.
“President Eisenhower would have never proposed banning Muslims from America. Nor would President Nixon. Nor would President Reagan. Donald Trump has betrayed and perverted their legacies,” he continued. “Consequently, I no longer recognize my party.”
Cross wrote that 2016 is a “citizenship election” in which Americans will have to stand up and show what they really believe in.
“The central question in 2016: Are Muslim Americans an equal and welcome member of the American constituency? For me, the answer is a clear ‘yes,’” he wrote.
Cross said it’s a painful decision to vote for Clinton, but he believes he has no other option.
“The prospect of voting for Hillary Clinton is uncomfortable to me, as if Dr. Van Helsing were compelled to vote for Dracula. But the only prospect more terrifying than voting for Hillary Clinton is not voting for her,” he wrote. “The reality of American politics today is, she is the only choice.”
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.