Vance, who is competing in the Ohio Republican Senate primary, apologized for calling Trump “reprehensible” in now-deleted tweets that he posted during the 2016 presidential campaign. Vance had also called Trump “noxious” and warned he was “leading the white working class to a very dark place.”
“Like a lot of people, I criticized Trump back in 2016,” Vance told Fox News on Monday, per Mediaite. “And I ask folks not to judge me by based on what I said in 2016, because I’ve been very open that I did say those critical things and I regret them, and I regret being wrong about the guy.”
“I think that he was a good president, I think he made a lot of good decisions for people, and I think he took a lot of flak,” the writer added of the one-term, twice-impeached ex-president.
“The most important thing,” continued Vance, “is not what you said five years ago, but whether you’re willing to stand up and take the heat and take the hits for actually defending the interests of the American people because that’s what this business of politics should be about.”
Vance announced his candidacy last Thursday. Billionaire venture capitalist Peter Thiel is reportedly backing his bid to the tune of $10 million.
Former state Treasurer Josh Mandel, former Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken and business executives Bernie Moreno and Mike Gibbons are also in the race.
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