We've taken a party that was about principle and about conservative government to one that is about one man and a personality. And that is a race that doesn't end well for the GOP. — State Sen. Jim Hendren
We've taken a party that was about principle and about conservative government to one that is about one man and a personality. And that is a race that doesn't end well for the GOP. — State Sen. Jim Hendren
An Arkansas lawmaker who is ditching the GOP said Trump's attempt to 'overturn the results of a fair and free election' was the 'final straw'
  • An Arkansas state senator this week announced he was leaving the GOP.
  • State Sen. Jim Hendren said he left the party after Trump incited the riot at the US Capitol.
  • Hendren accused GOP of a failure of leadership and said party leaders took a "backseat" approach.
A longtime Arkansas state lawmaker, with deep familial connections to the GOP, announced this week that he was leaving the Republican Party, citing the growing partisan divide and the Republican Party's refusal to rein in former President Donald Trump.

State Sen. Jim Hendren announced he was leaving the Republican Party and switching his affiliation to Independent in a nine-minute YouTube video posted Thursday. In the video, Hendren said political parties had enabled and even rewarded the growing partisan divide and said he'd grown "deeply concerned" over the state of US politics.

"There's a real danger that the Republican Party is going to be one that you can't win a primary without being a Trump supporter, and you can't win a general by being a Trump supporter," Hendren told CNN in an interview Friday. "What would have happened, then, is we've taken a party that was about principle and about conservative government to one that is about one man and a personality. And that is a race that doesn't end well for the GOP."

In the Thursday video, Hendren said his dissatisfaction with the Republican Party's response to Trump has been years-long, beginning with the ex-president's first campaign for the White House. He said Thursday he and his conservative beliefs had remained constant while the Republican Party had changed.

"I watched the former President actively fan the flame of racist rhetoric, make fun of those with disabilities, bully his enemies, and talk about women in ways that would never be tolerated in my home or business," he said. "After he did this from the highest office in the land, I realized that my daughters and my granddaughters were hearing it too. And I worried about the example this set for my sons and grandsons."

... "I've watched a systemic change at the core of our politics that emboldens our worst impulses, the most extreme thinking, disables policymaking, and hurts all of us," Hendren, a former Air Force fighter pilot, said. "It would be easy to blame this on one person or on a few but sadly it runs more deeply and cuts more broadly than that."
Source: https://www.businessinsider.com/arizona-lawmaker-leaves-gop-over-trump-2021-2