50 GOP officials: Trump puts national security ‘at risk’

A group of 50 top Republican national security officials on Monday penned a letter warning that Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpAppeals court OKs White House diverting military funding to border wall construction Pentagon: Tentative meeting between spy agencies, Biden transition set for early next week Conservative policy director calls Section 230 repeal an 'existential threat' for tech MORE doesn’t have the experience to serve as president and would jeopardize the country’s safety, according to The New York Times.


The letter, signed by aides and Cabinet members of past GOP administrations including George W. Bush's and Richard Nixon's, declared that none of the officials will vote for the GOP nominee because they “are convinced that he would be a dangerous president and would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being.

“Mr. Trump lacks the character, values, and experience to be President,” the letter says. “He weakens U.S. moral authority as the leader of the free world.”

“He appears to lack basic knowledge about the belief in the U.S. Constitution, U.S. laws, and U.S. institutions, including religious tolerance, freedom of the press, and an independent judiciary.”

The officials predict that Trump "would be the most reckless president in American history."

Some of the prominent officials include Michael Hayden, former director of both the CIA and National Security Agency; Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of Homeland Security for Bush and President Obama; John Negroponte, former director of national intelligence under Bush; Tom Ridge, former homeland security director under Bush as well as former governor of the battleground state of Pennsylvania; as well as others who have served as trade representatives, national security advisers and ambassadors.

The letter comes as some top Republicans have publicly declared that they won’t vote Trump this fall and will instead support Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillary and Chelsea Clinton to host series based on their book 'Gutsy Women' Democrats see spike in turnout among Asian American, Pacific Islander voters Biden officially announces ex-Obama official Brian Deese as top economic adviser MORE.

Lezlee Westine, who served as the White House director of the office of public liaison and as a deputy assistant to George W. Bush, said she will back Clinton for president on Monday.

The New York Times points out that notably missing from the letter are former secretaries of State Henry Kissinger, George P. Shultz, James A. Baker III, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice. Trump met with both Kissenger and Baker a few months ago.