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State Senator Who Left GOP: 'It's not enough to call Trump a bigot.'

Gage Skidmore
Many Iowa Republicans, including Chair of the Republican Party of Iowa Jeff Kaufmann, have lined up behind Trump as their party's nominee. State Senator David Johnson is decidedly not in that camp.

Many Republicans rebuked presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump for his remarks suggesting that Latino and Muslim judges would be unable to rule fairly on a trial involving the candidate. State Senator David Johnson did them one better: he left the party.

"I'm a Republican at heart, but I don't think it's enough to say 'I disagree with Mr. Trump' or 'I find him offensive' or 'I believe his comments are inappropriate' or to actually call him the bigot he is, and then say I'm still going to support him. I thought the mood of the country is we really don't like politicians who say one thing and do another. So I just decided on primary day, on Tuesday to go into the auditor's office and change my registration from Republican to No Party."

Johnson says he's never been a fan of Trump but that questioning an American's integrity because of their ethnicity, particularly a federal judge's, went a step too far.

"We have a disenfranchised electorate. It reminds me of 1930s Germany, some of the study that I've done there. People are looking for scapegoats. It scares me. It really, really scares me. People are saying I'm imagining things. I don't believe so."

In this River to River interview, Johnson talks with host Ben Kieffer. 

Ben Kieffer is the host of IPR's River to River