Sen. Jeff Flake: 'Somebody's Got To Push Back' Against Trump's Behavior

By Steve Goldstein
Published: Wednesday, August 3, 2016 - 2:45pm
Updated: Thursday, August 4, 2016 - 10:34am
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(Photo courtesy of the Office of Rep. Jeff Flake)
U.S. Senator Jeff Flake, R- Ariz.

Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump has had conflicts with a number of GOP elected officials during this campaign season, including Arizona’s U.S. Sens. John McCain and Jeff Flake. Despite that, McCain has said he’ll support Trump’s candidacy.

Flake hasn’t.

We spoke with Flake on his concerns about Trump.

Interview highlights

Can Trump be elected?

"I would argue that he simply can't get to 65 million (votes) when he's seemingly going out of his way to offend certain individuals, groups and organizations," Flake said. "I don't know if that's something he believes, that seems to shift over time ... All I can say is he's not a good candidate for the Republican party."

On the Republican National Convention

"It struck me that the final speech was pretty dark. That's been said before. With Republican conventions, there's typically a more hopeful tone — the shining city on a hill, more inspiring language— that was missing this time."

His view on Donald Trump as the Republican party's nominee

"I don't fault anybody who has said they will support the nominee," Flake said.

"As for me, I'm not up for re-election. I hope I would say the same thing if I were. But somebody's got to push back and somebody's got to say 'this is not how responsible candidates act.' To belittle the contribution of Muslim-Americans, particularly those who fought and died for this country. To belittle and talk about people coming across the border being rapists and then to call a judge, a federal judge born in Indiana a Mexican in derogatory way, that's just wrong."