Prominent Republican National Security Officials Voice Vigorous Opposition to Donald Trump      

Fifty of the nation’s most senior Republican national security officials have declared that Donald Trump “is not qualified to be President and Commander-in-Chief.” Indeed, they “are convinced that he would be a dangerous President and would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being.” In short, he “would be the most reckless president in American history.”[1]

Mr. Trump, they say, “lacks the character, values and experience” to be president. As a result, he would weaken the United States’ moral authority. These officials also question Trump’s knowledge of, and belief in, the Constitution. He has “demonstrated repeatedly that he has little understanding” of the nation’s “vital national interests, its complex diplomatic challenges, its indispensable alliances and the democratic values” on which American policy should be based. Their statement laments that “Mr. Trump has shown no interest in educating himself.”

“He is unable or unwilling to separate truth from falsehood. He does not encourage conflicting views. He lacks self-control and acts impetuously. He cannot tolerate personal criticism. He has alarmed our closest allies with his erratic behavior. All of these are dangerous qualities in an individual who aspires to be president and commander in chief, with command of the U.S. nuclear arsenal.”

Among the most prominent signatories of this statement are Michael V. Hayden, a former director of both the C.I.A. and the National Security Agency; John D. Negroponte, who served as the first director of national intelligence and then deputy secretary of state; and Robert B. Zoellick, another former deputy secretary of state, United States trade representative and, until 2012, president of the World Bank. Two former secretaries of homeland security, Tom Ridge and Michael Chertoff, also signed, as did Eric S. Edelman, who served as Vice President Dick Cheney’s national security adviser and as a top aide to Robert M. Gates when he was secretary of defense.


[1] Sanger, 50 G.O.P. Officials Warn Donald Trump Would Put Nation’s Security ‘At Risk.’ N.Y. Times (Aug. 8, 2016); A Letter From G.O.P. National Security Officials Opposing Donald Trump, N.Y. Times (Aug. 8, 2016); Morello, Former GOP national security officials: Trump would be ‘most reckless’ American president in history, Wash. Post (Aug. 8, 2016).