Elections

He was for Trump before he was against Trump. Now he’s for Trump

Sen. Brice Wiggins’ Trump dilemma

Wiggins supported Trump before he refused to endorse him. Now he supports him again. Wiggins explains his reasons.
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Wiggins supported Trump before he refused to endorse him. Now he supports him again. Wiggins explains his reasons.

Although he was one of the only elected Mississippi Republicans to not support Donald Trump in the presidential campaign, Sen. Brice Wiggins, R-Pascagoula, now says he’ll reluctantly go along with the new president — but only because he’s a Republican.

“It’s no secret. I did not endorse President-elect Trump,” Wiggins said before adding, “but he’s a Republican and he ran on that ticket.”

A majority of state Republicans were unwavering in their support of Trump, even after audio clips of him speaking lewdly of women were released and women accused him of sexual harassment.

Several Mississippi Republicans in the campaign stretch, including Gov. Phil Bryant, condemned Trump’s comments but supported him nonetheless.

Wiggins on the other hand said those comments marked the moment he backed away from supporting Trump.

“I didn’t agree with the comments or the way he said things,” he said.

“I have an 11-year-old daughter. I have to look at her in the face and discuss why the president of the United States uses that language.”

Now, Wiggins said he’ll support Trump, but reluctantly.

“I’m hopefully optimistic. As a Republican, I think he’ll be good for Mississippi. I base that on our defense work here and our support of law enforcement, everything like that,” he said.

Wiggins called the election of Trump a historic moment, one he has tried to learn from.

“The bottom line is the people spoke and it needs to be a lesson. Or, we the politicians need to be hearing what they are saying. They’ve been struggling economically. I think the focus for us needs to be on the economy and jobs...With this election, it’s been historic. It’s kind of interesting to be part of history like that,” he said.

Wiggins also said he believed the state would benefit if Trump selected Gov. Phil Bryant to an administration appointment.

“That’s up to Gov. Bryant but it would only be good for Mississippi,” he said.

Justin Vicory: 228-896-2326, @justinvicory

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