TIME Donald Trump

Here’s a Ranking of Republican Reactions to Donald Trump from ‘Sad!’ to ‘Yuuge’

Mixed feelings about the presumptive nominee

Republicans have had a mixed reaction to Donald Trump becoming their presumptive presidential nominee.

Some have preferred to avoid the topic altogether or issue pro forma declarations of support for the party’s nominee, while others have given more full-throated endorsements or even said he’d make a great president.

Here’s a list of what 28 Republicans had to say, ranked on a scale from “Sad!” to “Yuuge” based on their level of support.

  • Jeb Bush

    Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush speaks to an audience of voters on February 18, 2016 in Columbia, South Carolina.
    Spencer Platt/Getty Images Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush speaks to an audience of voters on February 18, 2016 in Columbia, South Carolina.

    Former Florida Governor and 2016 presidential candidate

    “Donald Trump has not demonstrated that temperament or strength of character. He has not displayed a respect for the Constitution. And, he is not a consistent conservative. These are all reasons why I cannot support his candidacy.” (May 6)

    Rating: Sad!

  • Lindsey Graham

    Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican from South Carolina and 2016 presidential candidate, right, places his hand over his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance at the Stafford County GOP Christmas Party during a campaign stop at Newick's Lobster House in Dover, New Hampshire, U.S., on Friday, Dec. 18, 2015.
    Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images Senator Lindsey Graham, a Republican from South Carolina and 2016 presidential candidate, right, places his hand over his heart during the Pledge of Allegiance at the Stafford County GOP Christmas Party during a campaign stop at Newick's Lobster House in Dover, New Hampshire, U.S., on Friday, Dec. 18, 2015.

    U.S. Senator from South Carolina and former 2016 presidential candidate

    “I just really believe that the Republican Party has been conned here, and this guy is not a reliable conservative Republican.” (May 6)

    Rating: Sad!

  • Mitt Romney

    Donald Trump Endorses GOP Candidate Mitt Romney In Las Vegas
    Ethan Miller—Getty Images Donald Trump endorses Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in Las Vegas on Feb. 2, 2012.

    Former Governor of Massachusetts and 2012 Republican presidential nominee

    “I see way too much demagoguery and populism on both sides of the aisle and I only hope and aspire that we’ll see more greatness. … I don’t intend on supporting either of the major party candidates at this point.” (May 5)

    Rating: Sad!

  • George W. Bush

    SMU v Baylor
    Ronald Martinez—Getty Images Former U.S. President George W. Bush attends a game between the Southern Methodist Mustangs and the Baylor Bears at McLane Stadium on August 31, 2014 in Waco, Texas.

    43rd President of the United States

    A spokesman for Bush said “[he] does not plan to participate in or comment on the presidential campaign.” (May 4)

    Rating: Sad!

  • Ted Cruz

    Senator Ted Cruz in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 30, 2014.
    Andrew Harrer—Bloomberg/Getty Images Senator Ted Cruz in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 30, 2014.

    U.S. Senator from Texas and former 2016 presidential candidate

    “The voters in the primary seem to have made a choice. We’ll see what happens as the months go forward, I think we need to watch and see what the candidates say and do.” (May 10)

    Rating: Sad!

  • Tom Ridge

    Courtesy of Tom Ridge

    Former Governor of Pennsylvania and Congressman

    “With a bumper sticker approach to policy, his bombastic tone reflects the traits of a bully, not an American president and statesman. If he cannot unite Republicans, how can he unite America? I simply cannot endorse him.”

    Rating: Sad!

  • Paul Ryan

    “Count me out,” said House Speaker Paul Ryan, discussing the ongoing race for the GOP nomination
    YURI GRIPAS—REUTERS “Count me out,” said House Speaker Paul Ryan, discussing the ongoing race for the GOP nomination

    Speaker of the House and 2012 vice presidential nominee.

    “I’m just not ready to do that at this point. I’m not there right now.” (May 5)

    Rating: Sad!

  • Dick Cheney

    Former Vice President Dick Cheney makes remarks during a bust unveiling ceremony for him in the Capitol Visitor Center's Emancipation Hall on Dec. 3, 2015.
    Tom Williams—AP Former Vice President Dick Cheney makes remarks during a bust unveiling ceremony for him in the Capitol Visitor Center's Emancipation Hall on Dec. 3, 2015.

    Former Vice President of the United States

    Cheney told CNN he would support Trump as the nominee but previously called the New Yorker a “liberal Democrat.” (May 6)

    Rating: Low energy

  • Kelly Ayotte

    Kelly Ayotte speaks at a news conference at the U.S. Capitol on Feb. 24, 2016.
    Chip Somodevilla—Getty Images Kelly Ayotte speaks at a news conference at the U.S. Capitol on Feb. 24, 2016.

    U.S. Senator from New Hampshire

    Said she would support the nominee, but would not endorse Trump “as a candidate herself.” (May 5)

    Rating: Low energy

  • Marco Rubio

    GOP Presidential Candidate Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) Holds Rally In Pensacola, Florida
    Mark Wallheiser—Getty Images Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) speaks to supporters at the Palafox Wharf on March 12, 2016 in Pensacola, Florida.

    U.S. Senator from Florida and former 2016 presidential candidate

    “I don’t see myself as the guy who’s going to spend the next six months taking shots at him,” Rubio said, adding that he “respects” and “accepts” Trump’s nomination by Republican primary voters. “That’s not going to change the reservations I have about this campaign.” (May 10)

    Rating: Low energy

  • Bobby Jindal

    Republican presidential candidate Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks during the Sunshine Summit conference being held at the Rosen Shingle Creek on November 14, 2015 in Orlando, Florida.
    Joe Raedle—Getty Images Republican presidential candidate Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks during the Sunshine Summit conference being held at the Rosen Shingle Creek on November 14, 2015 in Orlando, Florida.

    Former Governor of Louisiana and former 2016 presidential candidate

    “I do not pretend Donald Trump is the Reaganesque leader we so desperately need, but he is certainly the better of two bad choices.” (May 8)

    Rating: Low energy

  • Pat Toomey

    Pat Toomey arrives for the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on "The Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress" on Feb. 24, 2015.
    Bill Clark—CQ Roll Call/Getty Images Pat Toomey arrives for the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee hearing on "The Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress" on Feb. 24, 2015.

    U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania

    “Donald Trump was not my first choice. He wasn’t my second choice or third or fourth choice. I have lots of differences with Donald Trump and lots of problems with him but I am absolutely in the ‘never Hillary Clinton’ camp.” (May 4)

    Rating: Low energy

  • Lisa Murkowski

    Lisa Murkowski speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC., June 15, 2010.
    Alex Wong—Getty Images Lisa Murkowski speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC., June 15, 2010.

    U.S. Senator from Alaska

    “I have always supported the Republican nominee for president. Elections are about choices and while Hillary Clinton is not my choice—with her clear record against Alaska’s priorities—Donald Trump has made numerous inappropriate statements in the past that are troubling. Now, he needs to shift his focus to unite Republicans around conservative policies that will bring economic growth and prosperity back to our nation.” (May 4)

    Rating: Low energy

  • John McCain

    John McCain
    Carolyn Kaster—AP Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., speaks during a committee hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 7, 2015.

    U.S. Senator from Arizona and 2008 Republican presidential nominee

    “You have to listen to people that have chosen the nominee of our Republican Party,” McCain said. “I think it would be foolish to ignore them.” (May 9)

    Rating: Classy

  • Nikki Haley

    Nikki Haley speaks on Sept. 18, 2015 in Greenville, S.C.
    Sean Rayford—Getty Images Nikki Haley speaks on Sept. 18, 2015 in Greenville, S.C.

    South Carolina Governor

    “I have great respect for the will of the people, and as I have always said, I will support the Republican nominee for president.” (May 4)

    Rating: Classy

  • Mitch McConnell

    epa05074481 Senate Majority Leader Republican from Kentucky Mitch McConnell holds a year-end news conference, on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, USA, 18 December 2015. The Senate passed the omnibus spending bill that funds the government. EPA/MICHAEL REYNOLDS
    Michael Reynolds—EPA Senate Majority Leader Republican from Kentucky Mitch McConnell holds a year-end news conference, on Capitol Hill in Washington on De. 18, 2015.

    Senate Majority Leader

    “I have committed to supporting the nominee chosen by Republican voters, and Donald Trump, the presumptive nominee, is now on the verge of clinching that nomination.” (May 4)

    Rating: Classy

  • Reince Priebus

    Spin Room at the CNN GOP Debate
    Erik Kabik Photography/ MediaPunch Reince Priebus pictured in the Spin Room at the CNN GOP Debate at The Venetain Resort in Las vegas, NV on December 15, 2015.

    Chairman of the Republican National Committee

    “Donald Trump will be presumptive GOP nominee, we all need to unite and focus on defeating Hillary Clinton,” Priebus wrote in a tweet following Trump’s win in Indiana. (May 3)

    Rating: Classy

  • Pete Ricketts

    Neb. Gov. Pete Ricketts gestures during a news conference in Lincoln, Neb. on May 20, 2015.
    Nati Harnik—AP Neb. Gov. Pete Ricketts gestures during a news conference in Lincoln, Neb. on May 20, 2015.

    Governor of Nebraska

    “I will support the nominee of our party, and it looks like the nominee is going to be Donald Trump.” (May 4)

    Rating: Classy

  • Rand Paul

    Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul speaks during a caucus day rally on Feb. 1, 2016 in Des Moines, Iowa.
    Pete Marovich—Getty Images Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul speaks during a caucus day rally on Feb. 1, 2016 in Des Moines, Iowa.

    U.S. Senator from Kentucky and former GOP presidential candidate

    “You know, I’ve always said I’ll endorse the nominee,” “To me it’s most important that people know that, for Kentucky, the Clinton’s will be terrible.” (May 5)

    Rating: Classy

  • Rick Perry

    Rick Perry speaks to supporters at the Victory Texas and Republican Party of Texas election night watch party in Buda, Texas on Nov. 2, 2010.
    Ben Sklar—Getty Images Rick Perry speaks to supporters at the Victory Texas and Republican Party of Texas election night watch party in Buda, Texas on Nov. 2, 2010.

    Former Governor of Texas and 2016 presidential candidate

    “He wasn’t my first choice, wasn’t my second choice, but he is the people’s choice,” Perry said. “He is not a perfect man. But what I do believe is that he loves this country and he will surround himself with capable, experienced people and he will listen to them.” (May 5)

    Rating: Classy

  • Mike Huckabee

    Mike Huckabee
    Kiichiro Sato—AP Republican presidential candidate, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee speaks at Inspired Grounds Cafe in West Des Moines, Iowa on Jan. 31, 2016.

    Former Governor of Arkansas and 2016 Republican presidential candidate

    Huckabee recently said the billionaire was Hillary Clinton’s “worst nightmare.” “Everybody said Donald Trump wouldn’t come, they said he couldn’t get past August or the early controversies, I’m sitting as a candidate, ‘Well you know what, he won’t last long’ — well, he’s outlasted all of us and I think they’re gonna underestimate Donald Trump’s candidacy at their own peril.” (May 15)

    Rating: Very, very strong.

  • John Boehner

    WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 25: House Speaker John Boehner leaves after announcing his resignation on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., September 25, 2015. He left without any comments or answers of reporters. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)
    Astrid Riecken—Getty Images House Speaker John Boehner leaves after announcing his resignation on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., September 25, 2015.

    Former House Speaker

    Boehner said the two are “texting buddies” and that he would vote Trump in November.

    Rating: Very, very strong

  • Bob Dole

    25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act
    Bill Clark—Getty Images Bob Dole participates in a news conference in the Capitol Visitor Center in Washington, DC on July 27, 2015.

    Former U.S. Senator from Kansas and 1996 Republican presidential nominee

    “The voters of our country have turned out in record numbers to support Mr. Trump. It is important that their votes be honored and it is time that we support the party’s presumptive nominee, Donald J. Trump.” (May 5)

    Rating: Very, very strong

  • Mike Pence

    Indiana Gov. Mike Pence Holds Press Conference
    Aaron P. Bernstein—Getty Images Mike Pence speaks during a press conference on March 31, 2015.

    Governor of Indiana

    “I’m fully supportive of our presumptive nominee, and I do think Donald Trump will do well in the State of Indiana. I’m going to campaign hard for the Republican nominee because Indiana needs a partner in the White House.” (May 6)

    Rating: Very, very strong

  • Paul LePage

    Governor Paul LePage holds a Town Hall Meeting
    Portland Press Herald—Press Herald via Getty Images Maine Governor Paul LePage holds a Town Hall Meeting to discuss his tax reform plan at Thornton Academy in Saco.

    Governor of Maine

    “I think he could be one of the greatest presidents if he sits down and puts together a good team.” (Feb. 26)

    Ranking: Yuuge

  • Rick Scott

    Florida Gov. Rick Scott Holds Bill Signing In Miami Gardens
    Joe Raedle/Getty Images Florida Gov. Rick Scott as he visits the Marian Center which offers services for people with intellectual disabilities on July 13, 2015 in Miami Gardens, Fla.

    Governor of Florida

    “The voters are speaking clearly—they want a businessman outsider who will dramatically shake up the status quo in Washington.” (March 16)

    Rating: Yuuge

  • Chris Christie

    Donald Trump gives a thumbs up as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves to the crowd as they walk off the stage after a rally at Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory, N.C., March 14, 2016.
    Chuck Burton—AP Donald Trump gives a thumbs up as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie waves to the crowd as they walk off the stage after a rally at Lenoir-Rhyne University in Hickory, N.C., March 14, 2016.

    Governor of New Jersey

    “There is no one who is better prepared to provide America with the strong leadership that it needs both at home and around the world than Donald Trump.” (Feb. 26)

    Rating: Yuuge

  • Jeff Sessions

    Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump
    John Bazemore—AP Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, right, stands next to Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., as Sessions speaks during a rally Sunday, Feb. 28, 2016, in Madison, Ala.

    U.S. Senator from Alabama

    “I can tell you one thing, I think at this time in my opinion, my best judgment, at this time in America’s history, we need to make America great again!” (Feb. 28)

    Rating: Yuuge

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