Despite a growing number of prominent Republican party members calling for him to drop out of the presidential election, Donald Trump adamantly insists that he will never step down. "I’d never withdraw. I’ve never withdrawn in my life,” he told The Washington Post. “No, I’m not quitting this race. I have tremendous support." After the release of the shocking video of Trump making vulgar sexual comments about women, many Republicans, including 2008 Republican presidential nominee John McCain, have withdrawn their support from the polarizing candidate. It is “impossible to continue to offer even conditional support,” McCain said in a statement reported by The Guardian. “Cindy and I will not vote for Donald Trump. I have never voted for a Democratic presidential candidate and we will not vote for Hillary Clinton. We will write in the name of some good conservative Republican who is qualified to be president.” House Speaker Paul Ryan said he was "sickened" by Trump's remarks and subsequently disinvited the presidential nominee from a rally in his home state of Wisconsin on Saturday. Condoleezza Rice, former secretary of state under President George W. Bush, called for Trump to leave the race on Facebook, writing, "Enough!"
Even Trump's running mate, Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana, has gone so far as to say that he won't "condone [Trump's] remarks and cannot defend them" in a comment reported by Fox News. "We pray for his family and look forward to the opportunity he has to show what is in his heart when he goes before the nation tomorrow night," he said. According to The New York Times, more than 150 Republican leaders have withdrawn their support. But when the Post asked Trump about these defections, he seemed nonplussed. “People are calling and saying, 'Don’t even think about doing anything else but running,'” he said. “You have to see what’s going on. The real story is that people have no idea about the support. I don’t know how that’s going to boil down, but people have no idea about the support." Trump shared a similar sentiment on social media, assuring his Twitter and Instagram followers: "I WILL NEVER DROP OUT OF THE RACE, WILL NEVER LET MY SUPPORTERS DOWN!"
This morning, the presidential candidate posted more tweets, calling those who have turned against him "self-righteous hypocrites."
"People in the GOP are understandably nervous. People are looking for an escape," leading Republican election lawyer Ben Ginsberg told NPR. "The rules don't provide a ready-made escape. Nor do ballot rules, nor the electoral college. While people are looking for an out, this die was cast in Cleveland."