Conservatives Slam Trump Refusal To Say He'll Accept Election Results

John Locher

Lauren Fox contributed reporting.

Following the final presidential debate on Wednesday night, conservatives shook their heads at Donald Trump's refusal to commit to accepting the November election results.

On MSNBC, conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt said Trump "hit himself in the head and knocked himself out" with his answer on accepting election results.

"It is outside the norm of American political rhetoric to express a contingent acceptance of the result," Hewitt said. "He might have phrased it in a way that said, if there is a state that is contested by a small number of votes, I will, like Al Gore, contest that state. But he didn't say that. The contingent nature of his commitment to the results is unsettling to many people."

Fox News commentator Brit Hume said following the debate that Trump "stepped on it by refusing to say he’d accept the results."

"The headline out of this debate, as far as I can tell, is his refusal to say he would accept the results of the election. That doesn't happen usually in America," Hume said on Fox News. "It's newsworthy, it's controversial, it’s a big deal. And so the question is, is that something that’s going to help him? I doubt it."

When asked about Trump's response on accepting the results of the election, Republican National Committee spokesman Sean Spicer, said that the RNC would accept the election results.

"I don't speak for him, he speaks for himself," Spicer said. "I think we're gonna win this election and it won't be an issue."

Two Republican senators, Jeff Flake of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, as well as Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), quickly condemned Trump's failure to say he would accept the results of the election.

And several conservatives lamented Trump's answer and noted following the debate that Trump hurt himself by failing to commit to accepting the results of the election.

Laura Ingraham:

The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol:

Daily Wire editor Ben Shapiro:

Commentary editor Noah Rothman:

Townhall's Guy Benson:

National Review's Jonah Goldberg:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Caitlin MacNeal is a News Writer based in Washington, D.C. Before joining TPM, Caitlin interned and wrote for the Huffington Post, the Sunlight Foundation and Slate. She is a graduate of Georgetown University.
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