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Crapo calls on Trump to quit race, McMorris Rodgers still supports nominee

FILE – Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., left, and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis. smile during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, following a closed-door meeting of House Republicans. (Andrew Harnik / AP)
FILE – Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., left, and House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wis. smile during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, following a closed-door meeting of House Republicans. (Andrew Harnik / AP)

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington condemned Donald Trump’s recorded statements from 11 years ago regarding women that were reported Friday by the Washington Post.

But she did not say she’d withdraw her support from the Republican presidential candidate.

But a fellow Republican in Idaho, U.S. Sen. Mike Crapo, called on Trump to quit the race Saturday morning.

“Make no mistake, we need conservative leadership in the White House,” Crapo said in a statement. “I urge Donald Trump to step aside and allow the Republican party to put forward a conservative candidate like (his running mate) Mike Pence who can defeat Hillary Clinton.”

In a statement Friday, McMorris Rodgers said, “I have said before that I would not hesitate to voice my disagreement with Mr. Trump when he says something that I believe should not be part of our political dialogue. It is never appropriate to condone unwanted sexual advances or violence against women. Mr. Trump must realize that it has no place in public or private conversations today or in the past.”

The fourth-ranking Republican in the House of Representatives has lent tacit support to Trump, acknowledging in May that she cast her vote for the New York real estate tycoon without enthusiasm.

In a debate this week with 5th District Democratic challenger Joe Pakootas, McMorris Rodgers said she would vote for Trump over Hillary Clinton and praised his acumen as a businessman.

In his statement Saturday, Crapo said, “I have reached the decision that I can no longer endorse Donald Trump. This is not a decision that I have reached lightly, but his pattern of behavior has left me no choice. His repeated actions and comments toward women have been disrespectful, profane and demeaning. I have spent more than two decades working on domestic violence prevention. Trump’s most recent excuse of ‘locker room talk’ is completely unacceptable and is inconsistent with protecting women from abusive, disparaging treatment.”

Crapo’s Democratic opponent in this year’s election, Jerry Sturgill, released a statement Friday calling Trump “repugnant” and “predatory,” and he criticized Crapo and Idaho Gov. Butch Otter for backing Trump.

“As an Idahoan, I continue to be disappointed and mortified that Senator Crapo and Governor Otter have endorsed such a despicable person,” said Sturgill, who grew up in Twin Falls in a Republican family. “Calling on Trump to apologize for his behavior is like asking a rattlesnake to apologize for being venomous. I can only chalk this up to the hyper-partisanship that is ruining our government. They and all Idahoans should reject Trump immediately and without qualification.”

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