Joel  /  Maryland

“He’s not a man of conviction. I think he’s a man of convenience.”

Video Transcript

“Hey, my name is Joel Gilbert. I was born in California, live here in Maryland, been a Republican since I turned 18 and could vote. I voted for Trump twice and I will never vote for him again.

“In both 2016 and 2020, when I voted for him, I sort of plugged my nose because I didn’t feel like he was the kind of guy that I wanted leading our country, but he was the one most closely aligned with the issues that I thought were important for our nation. But the more that I’ve come to learn about him, the more I realized I don’t think I can trust him. I can’t trust him to make a decision that’ll be good for the nation. He’s gonna make a decision that’s gonna be good for him in his eyes.

“As a father of three, I certainly don’t want my kids looking up to him as being the head of our nation thinking, yeah, that’s a man who’s worthy of my respect. He is not worthy of our respect, for sure.

“I think when it comes to his rhetoric about retribution and what would happen in his second term, I definitely feel like that he’s gonna do whatever is gonna make his name rise to the top. And I think we see evidence of that in the way that he called out the Republican leaders of Congress to pull back from a really good immigration deal. He’s not for protecting our country, he’s for protecting his name. Some of our best congressmen and women negotiated a really good deal that had very good compromise on both sides of the aisle. And yet he pulled back on it because it would make President Biden look good, because it would actually get something done. He’s not a man who’s fit to govern. I just feel like Trump is gonna do whatever’s expedient and he’s not a man of conviction. I think he’s a man of convenience.

“Our nation was founded on some principles of civility, of constitutional alignment, of a peaceful transfer of power, and the fact that President Trump and a lot of the folks involved in January 6th, what many have called the insurrection, I think personally is treasonous. I don’t think that it represents our country well, it certainly doesn’t uphold the Constitution. It undermines everything that we as Americans stand for. I may not agree with who got elected to be president or the stance of their party, but that was the voice of the American people, and that needs to be the voice that moves forward. Otherwise, we’re not a constitutional republic anymore.

“So as I think about the person who should sit in the Oval Office, the person who should be the President of the United States, I think about someone who should be constitutionally informed in their conduct. They’re making a vow of the Constitution and they need to uphold that. I personally wanna see someone who demonstrates conservative values, who demonstrates that this is something they believe, it’s who they are, not because it’s convenient or not because it’s gonna get them the most votes.

“I wanna see someone who’s gonna put country before party, or certainly before power. If it’s inconvenient to do the right thing, then do the right thing. But I just want someone who will put our country first in that regard. I want someone who’s gonna demonstrate civility. We need to bring civility back to our political rhetoric. And finally, I think we need someone who can demonstrate collaboration rather than contention, someone who’s gonna work with other people. There may have to be compromises, but we can get things done. They can get things done if they’ll work together and not keep fighting each other.

“That’s why I’m not gonna vote for Trump because he doesn’t represent any of those things.”