Campus Republicans discuss support for Trump

Meghan Sharma | Contributing Reporter

A polarizing figure within his own party, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump saw mixed support on campus this weekend.

While the College Republicans have chosen not to endorse Trump for president, other Republican students could be seen supporting him with signs around campus.

Zachary Persing, a sophomore studying political science, was holding a “Save the GOP” sign and said that Trump did not represent what he wanted in a Republican nominee.

“On many policies, he is out of line with mainstream Republicans, regardless of whether that’s on the more conservative end of the spectrum or the more moderate end of the spectrum,” Persing said.

Persing said that he did not feel comfortable supporting the Republican candidate.

“The reason I can’t support him, in addition to not agreeing with many of his policies, is that he quite simply does not have the character to be President,” Persing added. “I don’t think someone who alienates Latinos, Muslims, women and veterans is the right person for this country.”

While he will not be supporting either Trump or Clinton, Persing is considering voting for Evan McMullin, a former Republican CIA operations officer currently running as an Independent candidate for the presidency.

Persing was also on a segment for FOX News on Sunday morning, when he and other Washington University Republicans expressed their opinions on the upcoming debate.

Some of these student Republicans were most concerned about the economic plan for the country and other issues, but many were worried about various remarks made by Trump during his campaign.

Max Handler, one student on the panel, said that Trump could ruin the Republican name by making it seem like the party has certain beliefs that it should not.

Graduate student Tom Hildebrand is a Trump supporter and the co-founder of Missouri Youth for Trump. He said that the Republican Party is changing drastically, perhaps indicating that the party would be ready for the change in policies and ideals that Trump would bring.

“The feeling on campus–you know, it’s interesting. There’s a lot of sort of overt Hillary support, but I’m seeing a lot of quiet Trump support,” Hildebrand said of support on campus. “And I’ve been all over Missouri, all over the Midwest, and it sort of mirrors that experience. And I feel the same here as anywhere else.”

Additional reporting by Noa Yadidi.

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