Jun 6, 2024 - Politics

Arizona lifelong Republican featured on anti-Trump billboards

A billboard mockup that says, "I'm a former Trump voter. I won't vote for a convicted felon."

A mock-up of one of the anti-Trump billboards in Phoenix. Courtesy of Republican Voters Against Trump

"I Won't Vote for a Convicted Felon" billboards popped up around the Valley this week, featuring a former Arizona Trump voter who has changed his tune.

Why it matters: Republicans Voters Against Trump launched the ad blitz as part of a campaign in four of six states, including ours, expected to decide the presidential election.

Zoom in: 73-year-old Phoenix resident Kevin Wenker told Axios he isn't a fan of President Biden's border policies and "laid back" governing style but will vote for him because he fears the country won't survive another Trump presidency.

  • The lifelong Republican, a retired Lutheran minister, said he supported Donald Trump in 2016 "and has repented ever since."
  • He told us he'd hoped Trump would grow into "a statesman" but quickly realized his "name calling" and refusal to take responsibility for his actions wouldn't stop.

The intrigue: Republican Voters Against Trump reached out to Wenker after he was interviewed in a 2021 Los Angeles Times story about disillusioned Trump voters, he said.

  • Wenker said he was happy to participate in the new campaign highlighting Trump's recent hush money trial conviction because "I cannot imagine a felon being the president of the United States."

The other side: "This is nothing more than a desperate ploy by idiotic and brain-dead Never Trumpers who are clearly suffering from a severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome because President Trump continues to dominate in the polls and fundraising," Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung said in a statement to Axios.

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