Gov. Susana Martinez will not support Republican nominee Donald Trump, her office told media in a statement sent Saturday, a little more than a day after the release of audio that showed Trump speaking off-color about kissing women without their permission and that he would “grab them by the pussy.”
The Washington Post first released the video of Trump speaking to then-Access Hollywood host Billy Bush in 2005.
“What Trump brags about is appalling and completely unacceptable,” Martinez said. “No woman should ever be treated the way he claims he treated women. Unfortunately, there is a pattern of disturbing conduct and offensive rhetoric that raises serious questions about his fitness to be President. That is why I have withheld my support from the very beginning, and will not support him now.”
Martinez previously said she would not vote for Hillary Clinton or Gary Johnson.
Martinez criticized Trump a number of times over the past 18 months, including at an event with wealthy donors at the Florida mansion of David Koch.
She told the crowd of about 60 wealthy GOP backers that, as a Latina, she was offended by Trump’s language about immigrants. Noting her years working as a prosecutor on the Mexican border and now as a border-state governor, Martinez said Trump’s plan to build a wall and force Mexico to pay for it was unrealistic and irresponsible, according to multiple people in attendance.
She also criticized Trump for his remarks when announcing his campaign.
“They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems, they’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime and some I assume are good people,” Trump said in New York City last June.
“I think those are horrible things to say about anyone or any culture … anyone of any ethnicity,” Martinez said last July. “I mean, that is uncalled for … completely.”
Still, until now, Martinez had kept the possibility of support Trump open, saying she wanted to speak to Trump about his plans on the national labs and military bases in the state.
Martinez also helped cast the state Republican Party’s votes for Trump at the Republican National Convention.
Earlier in the day, Lt. Gov. John Sanchez issued a statement on his Facebook page, though he did not say whether or not he would be supporting or voting for Trump.
“I am beyond disappointed by Donald Trump’s remarks. As I think of moms, wives, daughters, sisters and all women, I am bothered and angered after hearing these comments,” Sanchez said. “Women should be respected at all times and should never be objectified in such a vulgar manner.”
NM Political Report requested comment from a spokesman for the Republican Party of New Mexico Friday night, but did not receive one as of press time.
The Democratic Party of New Mexico was quick to denounce Trump.
“Trump’s comments are not only vulgar, they are intolerable. Trump disrespects women, and that is not a quality we want in our President,” Debra Haaland, the DPNM chair, said Friday night.