Former Trump administration officials are ardent opponents of his reelection. (Part-1)

New York  Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper labeled him a “threat to democracy.” Former national security adviser John Bolton called him “unfit to be president.” Former Vice President Mike Pence declined to endorse him due to “profound differences.”  

Former officials are vocally opposing Donald Trump's third presidential run, predicting terrible consequences for the country and the rule of law. It's a rare chorus of critics from individuals who experienced his behavior in office and the turbulence that followed.  

Sarah Matthews, a former Trump assistant who testified before the House Jan. 6 committee and warned of his threat, said it's “mind-boggling” how many senior staff members have criticized him.  

"These are folks who saw him up close and personal and his leadership style," Matthews added. The American people should heed to what these folks are saying because it should be disturbing that Trump's first-term hires are suggesting he's unsuited for a second term. Critics remain a minority. Many Republican legislators and leaders have embraced Trump, some reluctantly and others enthusiastically. Trump's campaign emphasizes that many former advisers and Cabinet members support another term.  

Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung stated, “The majority of the people who served in President Trump's cabinet and in his administration, like the majority of Americans, have overwhelmingly endorsed his candidacy to beat Crooked Joe Biden and take back the White House Still, the Biden campaign has criticized former Trump officials in remarks and social media posts to influence Republican voters, even those who backed other candidates in the GOP primary, to reject his candidacy.  

Biden campaign spokesperson Ammar Moussa stated, “Those who worked with Donald Trump at the most senior levels of his administration believe he is too dangerous, too selfish and too extreme to ever lead our country again—we agree. The rift among former Trump staffers reflects his presidency. Trump's demands were constantly met with resistance from officials and advisors who resisted stupid, unreasonable, and often criminal requests. Frequent firings. Many quit.  

The weeks after the 2020 election, when Trump tried to overcome his loss to Biden, were especially tumultuous for staff. Trump summoned followers to Washington on Jan. 6, 2021, after his lies about a stolen election incited violent Capitol breachers. Many administration employees, including Matthews, resigned in protest.  

Trump fiercely criticized Pence, who counted the Electoral College ballots on Jan. 6 as vice president. Trump demanded that Pence stop Biden from becoming president, something he couldn't do. On Jan. 6, demonstrators chanted “Hang Mike Pence!” and forced Pence to depart the Senate chamber.  

Despite his pride in their accomplishments, Pence said he “cannot in good conscience” back Trump due to Jan. 6 and other issues. Esper, ousted by Trump days after the 2020 election, disagreed with Trump on various topics, including his call for military soldiers to quell social unrest after police killed George Floyd.  

Esper told HBO's “Real Time With Bill Maher” that Trump is “a threat to democracy” and that “I think there’s a lot to be concerned about.” “There's no way I'll vote for Trump, but every day Trump does something crazy, the door to voting for Biden opens a little bit more, and that's where I am,” Esper added. Former White House aides, particularly a trio who testified about the Jan. 6 attack and Trump's attempt to undo the election, are among Trump's most ardent detractors.  

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