Former GOP Congressman Says Republican Convention “Was Almost Like A Lynching”

Chris Shays, who recently endorsed Hillary Clinton, pointed to the RNC as a turning point for him, saying the GOP today is "not the party he joined."
chris shaysedited

Over the past week or so, Republicans have been coming out of the woodwork saying they will not support GOP nominee Donald Trump for the White House. Many of them have additionally stated that they are endorsing Hillary Clinton for POTUS. Earlier this week, former GOP Congressman Chris Shays came out for the ex-Secretary of State.

Shays appeared on CNN Thursday morning to discuss his support of Clinton and why he feels Trump is dangerous. Right away, he told host Brianna Kielar that last month’s Republican National Convention was the final straw for him, especially when compared to the DNC, which was full of optimism and patriotism. He also noted that he’s always had great respect for Clinton.

From CNN’s transcript:


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN ANCHOR: Another Republican breaking with his party to support Hillary Clinton. We’re talking about former congressman Chris Shays, who wrote an Op-Ed for about his decision, saying in part, “I know some Republicans dislike President Obama and have such a strong dislike for Hillary Clinton. They are willing to vote for a man they know does not have the temperament, knowledge, or experience to be president. In fact, I think many Republicans know Donald Trump could cause great damage to our country and the world at large and still plan to vote for him. But not me.”

Former Connecticut congressman Chris Shays joining us now, and tell us about your decision. How did you come to this conclusion that you were not going to — not only are you not going to support Donald Trump, but you are going to support Hillary Clinton.

FMR. REP. CHRISTOPHER SHAYS (R), CONN.: Well, first off, I was a strong and am a strong supporter of John Kasich. He was my first choice, my second choice, my third choice, but now my conclusion is that Hillary Clinton is my choice. And if you had told me I would have said that three months ago I would have been really surprised.

So I watched the conventions. The Republicans had a very dark convention. It was almost like a lynching, you know — guilty and lock her up. And I thought this isn’t the party of Ronald Reagan and it ain’t the party that I joined.

And then I watched the Democratic Convention and Hillary did all the things that reminded me why I liked her. I worked with her on the 9/11 sicknesses of these incredible people who were cleaning up the debris and trying to save lives.

And she came into our hearing — I was chairing the National Security Committee and we were in New York. She came in the hearing, sat next to the other House members, asked me one or two questions, and then spoke. She was willing to work with House Republicans and Democrats and she wasn’t partisan, she was solution-oriented.

The biggest problem we have in this country right now is our government is not working. And our founding fathers formed the Constitution to help a diverse group of people find common ground. She’ll do that.


“Almost like a lynching.” WOW. And, the thing is, he ain’t wrong. Multiple times throughout that convention, attendees disrupted the speeches with chants of “lock her up!” Chris Christie held a kangaroo court ‘trying’ Hillary Clinton for her crimes. Rudy Giuliani, spittle flying, yelled out “we’re coming to get you” during his address. Trump himself sounded like Immortan Joe while accepting the nomination.

So, yeah, I can see how a moderate, milquetoast, Northeastern Republican like Shays would be turned off by the screening of Mad Max: Make America Hate Again the GOP put on a few weeks ago.

Justin Baragona is the editor and publisher of Contemptor. Prior to starting the site, he worked on the editorial staff of PoliticusUSA. During that time, he had his work quoted by USA Today and BBC News, among others. Justin began his published career as a political writer for 411Mania. He currently resides in St. Louis, MO with his wife and pets.
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