Not surprisingly, some supporters of Donald Trump are backing his call for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”
CNN reports that Trump supporters in South Carolina are fine with Trump’s proposal, since their concern is terrorism and what they see as the Obama administration’s paltry response.
A report by WMUR in New Hampshire also quoted Trump’s top allies in the state expressing support.
For his part, Trump said he doesn’t care what the media or his fellow Republicans think about his proposal.
One fellow Republican who he should care about is his Florida campaign co-chairman Joe Gruters.
If Gruters were just Trump’s man in Florida and chairman of the Sarasota County GOP, he probably would not need to weigh in on Trump’s proposal. No one is going to hold Trump’s other Florida co-chair, Susie Wiles, accountable for Trump’s position.
But Gruters (a good friend of this writer) is also Vice Chairman of the Florida GOP, a candidate for the Florida House of Representatives and a member of the Florida State University Board of Trustees. Because he wants to hold public office and because he is a leader at a major institution of higher learning, it’s only fair to know whether Gruters supports Trump’s xenophobic position.
If Gruters does agree with Trump on this issue, this, in my mind, makes him unfit for public office. As James Grant, a member of the legislative body that Gruters wants to serve in, stated Monday in reaction to the proposal, Trump is espousing fascism.
Does Joe Gruters support fascism? Aristotelian logic says he does because he supports Trump, although I know Gruters well enough to know he can’t possibly think this way.
Furthermore, as a member of the Board of Trustees at FSU, Gruters just cannot endorse Trump’s closed-mindedness. There are hundreds of Muslim students at FSU whom he would be insulting if he supports Trump’s proposal. Just as he would not be fit to serve in the Florida House if he backs this plan, Gruters should not be allowed to serve on a university board.
Therefore, today, Joe Gruters is faced with a tough choice. He needs to either resign as co-chair of Donald Trump’s Florida effort or withdraw as a state House candidate and resign from the FSU Board of Trustees.
And while he’s add it, Gruters might want to think about taking back one of those “Statesman of the Year” awards.