Rep. Richard Hanna, R-N.Y., broke party ranks Tuesday and announced that he would vote for Hillary Clinton in November.
“While I disagree with her on many issues, I will vote for Mrs. Clinton,” he wrote in an op-ed on Syracuse.com.
There have been several high-profile critics of Donald Trump among Republican members of Congress, including some who said they would not vote for their own party’s nominee in the general election. However, Hanna is the first to say he would cast his ballot for Trump’s Democratic opponent.
In a separate interview with Syracuse.com, Hanna said his decision was motivated by Trump’s recent comments about a Muslim American family whose son heroically died in the Iraq War in 2004. The soldier’s father, Khizr Khan, passionately criticized Trump during last week’s Democratic National Convention. Trump pushed back in interviews and on Twitter, questioning why Khan’s wife was silent during the speech.
“I saw that and felt incensed,” Hanna told the outlet of Trump’s response. “I was stunned by the callousness of his comments.”
He added: “I think Trump is a national embarrassment. Is he really the guy you want to have the nuclear codes?”
The moderate, upstate New York congressman announced at the end of last year that he would retire at the end of his 2016 term.