A Georgia Republican has resigned from his role as an elector, hours after saying he can't vote for GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump and may not support him as a member of the electoral college.
Baoky Vu said in a joint statement yesterday with the Georgia Republican Party that his comments on Trump would be "detrimental" to the party.
"I have not lost faith in who we stand for as a party and will continue to fight for those who uphold our Constitution and our shared values," the statement said. "It is the least that I can do as a grateful citizen of this great nation."
Vu was chosen by Georgia Republicans as an elector, constitutionally required stand-ins for presidential candidates in the electoral college system.
Vu put out a statement saying he wouldn't vote for Trump in November and then told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that if Trump wins Georgia's popular vote he may not support the GOP nominee as a representative in the electoral college.
Georgia is one of 21 states that don't require electors chosen by political parties to back their party's candidate.
"As a 2016 presidential elector, I am forever grateful to our state party and our chairman for bestowing this once-in-a-lifetime honor on me," Vu said in his initial statement. "I take my role seriously and in the face of the difficult choice before us, I will always put America first over party and labels. Thus, I will not be voting for Donald Trump in the general election."
Vu, a naturalized citizen, told the newspaper that his family's experience fleeing communist rule in Vietnam makes him cherish the right to vote. Vu also said Trump's recent criticism of an American Muslim family whose son was killed in Iraq while serving in the US Army finalized his decision not to vote for the nominee.
Trump supporters in Georgia immediately began calling for action from the state party after Vu's comments.
State GOP Chairman John Padgett said in the party's statement that he accepted Vu's resignation and is confident Georgia Republicans will unite behind Trump. Padgett said party attorneys are considering how to replace Vu.