Johnson Has Endorsed Trump. He Stated in 2015 Trump Could Be ‘Harmful.’

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Years earlier than he performed a lead position in attempting to assist President Donald J. Trump keep in workplace after the 2020 election or defended him in two separate Senate impeachment trials, Speaker Mike Johnson bluntly asserted that Mr. Trump was unfit to serve and could possibly be a hazard as president.

Mr. Johnson, then a state lawmaker in Louisiana, additionally questioned what would occur if “he determined to bomb one other head of state merely disrespecting him.”

The feedback got here at a time when many Republicans who would later turn into loyalists of Mr. Trump had been disparaging him and declaring him unfit to carry the nation’s highest workplace. Solely later did they fall in line and function the first-line defenders of his most excessive phrases and actions.

In a prolonged assertion to The New York Occasions on Monday evening trying to distance himself from the feedback, Mr. Johnson endorsed Mr. Trump’s 2024 presidential marketing campaign publicly for the primary time, and stated his earlier statements had been made earlier than he personally knew Mr. Trump. He attributed them to the truth that “his type was very totally different than mine.”

“Throughout his 2016 marketing campaign, President Trump shortly received me and tens of millions of my fellow Republicans over,” Mr. Johnson stated. After I bought to know him personally shortly after we each arrived in Washington in 2017, I grew to understand the person who he’s and the qualities about him that made him the extraordinary president that he was.”

A spokesman for Mr. Trump declined to touch upon the posts.

In 2015, Mr. Johnson, who would announce his first run for Congress the subsequent 12 months, wrote that he was horrified as he watched Mr. Trump’s debate efficiency along with his spouse and youngsters.

“Solely Rosie O’Donnell,” Mr. Trump responded. He added that the nation’s drawback was political correctness, one thing he didn’t have time for.

Mr. Johnson was horrified.

In final month’s speaker’s race, Mr. Trump praised Mr. Johnson, noting that he was somebody who had “supported me, in each thoughts and spirit, from the very starting of our GREAT 2016 Victory.”

Mr. Johnson is way from alone in having expressed deep considerations about Mr. Trump, solely to go on to later embrace him and his agenda.

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