HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — The highest ranking Republican woman in Connecticut politics has announced she voted for Donald Trump.
Exit polling from yesterday’s primary found large percentages of Connecticut women say they could never vote for Trump. There have been consistent reports that a lot of women don’t like Donald Trump, but a very prominent Connecticut Republican woman has come to the conclusion that he would be good for the party.
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Thousands of Connecticut residents attended Donald Trumps three campaign events here that helped catapult him to a resounding victory in the Republican Primary. One of those that attended, and has now announced she voted for him, is the highest ranking elected female Republican in the General Assembly, House Minority Leader Themis Klarides of Derby.
She had loudly criticized some of the things Trump had said in the past about women and others, but apparently now feels he is good for the party saying, “To see people from such a large cross section of society interested in him…not the usual people that go to the polls every time and vote Republican because they’re registered Republicans. That’s not going to win us elections.”
She compares the excitement around Trump to the excitement Barack Obama created for the Democrats eight years ago, excitement that change in Washington can actually happen, “People need to feel there’s hope and excitement for that change and I haven’t seen any other candidate who has given people that excitement.”
The Republican leader in the State Senate is still firmly behind Ohio Governor John Kasich, and is not ready to follow his Republican colleague’s lead on Trump. “I think he’s a very smart man,” said Sen. Len Fasano (R-North Haven) adding, “You can’t be that successful without being smart. I think he needs to change his rhetoric and awful lot for me to get closer and warm up to him.”
Prior to Klarides, Waterbury Republican State Rep. Tony D’Amelio was Trump’s only supporter in the legislature. He introduced Trump at the big rally on Saturday. “We go into that convention and Donald Trump is within striking distance of a hundred votes and they don’t give it to him I think there’s going to be a huge backlash within our society especially against the Republican establishment,” D’Amelio said Wednesday.
And D’Amelio says he thinks that backlash would reach all the way down the ballot and hurt Republicans across the board even a guy like him running for re-election as a State Rep.