While high-ranking Republican politicians are turning on Donald Trump en masse, claiming they will not and cannot vote for him anymore, Trump’s supporters are sending a different message: Trump democratically won the Republican nomination, and that’s that.
According to reporters across the nation, the recent public unendorsements of Trump by Republican politicians have been met with heckles and boos from rally-goers, who have stayed loyal to the party’s ticket. Even figures still supporting Trump but daring to criticize his leaked remarks bragging about sexually assaulting women are seeing crowds turn on them.
BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins reported from Fall Fest in Wisconsin — an event Trump was originally scheduled to attend alongside House Speaker Paul Ryan and Gov. Scott Walker, but was subsequently disinvited from:
Just an incredibly tense scene here at (lol) Fall Fest. Trump supporters heckling GOP speakers, who then reprimand them from the stage.— McKay Coppins (@mckaycoppins) October 8, 2016
There was so much animosity in the crowd that Trump supporters were indiscriminate with their heckles, Coppins reported, even shouting down Republican politicians who were supporting Trump or speaking to issues core to the Republican platform.
Even Republicans trying to encourage people to vote for Trump in spite of recent revelations—like Jim Sensenbrenner—are getting heckled.— McKay Coppins (@mckaycoppins) October 8, 2016
It basically feels like there are 2 parties here. Trumpists in crowd totally uninterested in small-govt. pro-business rhetoric from speakers— McKay Coppins (@mckaycoppins) October 8, 2016
There was a clear annoyance within the crowd that Republicans were even focusing on the recently released hot mic recording, according to the Associated Press’s Scott Bauer:
And it wasn’t just in Wisconsin. Speakers — including known NeverTrumper Mitt Romney — at a rally in Las Vegas were met with a similar response from the crowds.
Video: Rep. Joe Heck, in close senate race in Nevada, calls on Trump to drop out as some in crowd boo him https://t.co/uHHVupSykb— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) October 8, 2016
Heck is getting booed as he says Trump should step down. "I'm so disappointed in you," one yells.— Jon Ralston (@RalstonReports) October 8, 2016
This is what the Republicans have wrought.
And in Missouri, where despite the many calls for Trump to step down, conservative voters were not in favor of having another Republican nominee, the Washington Post’s Dave Weigel reported:
Been following Sen. Blunt and talking to Missouri conservatives all day; can't find one who wants Trump to quit.— daveweigel (@daveweigel) October 8, 2016
Trump has made it very clear he has no intention of quitting the race. “I WILL NEVER DROP OUT OF THE RACE. WILL NEVER LET MY SUPPORTERS DOWN!” he tweeted Saturday afternoon.
Trump has long felt he is running against both Democrats and establishment Republicans — a divide that seems to deepen with every new Trump controversy and scandal.
"It's almost, in some ways, like I'm running against two parties," Trump told conservative talk radio host Mike Gallagher in June. And he’s still acting that way.
While his contacts in the GOP establishment, including his running mate, Mike Pence, are still trying to keep the peace, it has become increasingly clear that Trump has no interest in placating other GOP politicians — and that many of his supporters are right there with him.