Jul 6, 2021 - Politics & Policy

J.D. Vance addresses tweets slamming Trump: "I regret being wrong"

J.D. Vance, author of the book "Hillbilly Elegy," poses for a portrait photograph near the US Capitol building in Washington, D.C., January 27, 2017.
J.D. Vance, venture capitalist and author of "Hillbilly Elegy." Photo: Astrid Riecken for the Washington Post via Getty Images

Author J.D. Vance, who's running in the Ohio Republican race for a U.S. Senate seat, addressed on Fox News Monday his since-deleted tweets criticizing former President Trump.

Why it matters: The venture capitalist and now-vocal Trump supporter has been accused of hypocrisy and "flip-flopping" after CNN's Andrew Kaczynski last week shared screenshots of the 2016 tweets in which Vance said the then-presidential candidate's comments on "Immigrants, Muslims, etc." were "reprehensible."

  • The author of the bestselling "Hillbilly Elegy" also said he would vote for independent Evan McMullin, rather than Trump.
  • Democrat Tim Ryan, who's also running for the Ohio Senate seat, tweeted in response that he and Vance "have exactly one thing in common — neither of us voted for Donald Trump."

What he's saying: Vance told Fox News' Alicia Acuna that "like a lot of people," he criticized Trump in 2016.

  • "I ask folks not to judge me based on what I said in 2016, because I've been very open that I did say those critical things and I regret them, and I regret being wrong about the guy," he said.
  • "I think he was a good president, I think he made a lot of good decisions for people, and I think he took a lot of flak."
"The most important thing, is not what you said five years ago, but whether you're willing to stand up and take the heat and take the hits for actually defending the interests of the American people."
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