Flake: Trump rallies reflect ‘spasms of a dying party’
Retiring Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) on Sunday said the crowds at rallies for President Trump and other Republicans reflect “spasms of a dying party,” adding that the GOP will have to formulate a governing agenda to reach more voters.
“When you look at some of the audiences cheering for Republicans, sometimes, you look out there and you say, ‘those are the spasms of a dying party,’ ” Flake said on ABC’s “This Week.”
“When you look at the lack of diversity, sometimes, and it depends on where you are, obviously, but by and large, we’re appealing to older white men and there are just a limited number of them, and anger and resentment are not a governing philosophy,” he continued.
Flake, who has announced he will not seek reelection in 2018, has been a frequent critic of Trump, earning the president’s ire on Twitter.
The Arizona senator refused to back Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, calling him unfit for office. He wrote a $100 checkto Democrat Doug Jones in the race, writing “Country over Party” in the memo line.
Flake on Sunday said he believes Moore, who earned Trump’s full endorsement and had the backing of former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon, will be a “lasting” stain on the Republican Party.
Flake also said he’s hopeful Bannon’s role within the party is being marginalized.
“The last thing we need is to push that ultranationalist, ethno-nationalist, protectionist kind of element of the party. That’s not good for us,” Flake said.