GOP Lawmaker Says Republicans Should Stop Trying To “Out-Trump” Trump

In an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday, Colorado Republican Congressman Ken Buck suggested that Republican presidential candidates should stick to their strengths rather than attempt to “out-Trump Donald Trump.”

“State of the Union” host Dana Bash noted that Buck attended an April event in Washington featuring Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and also worked with him on the Judiciary Committee when the governor was in the House. She asked Buck what he thinks of DeSantis’ presidential campaign and if he had any advice for him.

But said he told DeSantis at the April event that he shouldn’t “try to out-Trump Donald Trump.” He explained to Bash that no one can operate the way Trump does.

Buck added that Ron DeSantis should run on his “strong record of accomplishments” as Florida Governor, particularly in his response to the pandemic “and other areas.”

Buck clarified that he hasn’t endorsed the Florida Republican, adding that he would also attend events with Tim Scott, Nikki Haley, “or others who are friends.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Buck criticized Donald Trump’s mishandling of classified documents in light of the recent report about the July 2021 audio in which the former president reportedly suggested that he wanted to share the details of a Pentagon document outlining a possible attack on Iran but said he knew there were limits to his ability to declassify documents now that he is no longer president, the Washington Examiner reported.

Buck told Dana Bash that Trump’s actions were “beyond just irresponsible.” He said he isn’t sure if someone has “located the document” in question or if there is a copy of it “somewhere” to know what is in it and what type of classification it has. But he does know that Trump was “waving some paper,” Buck added.

He said this wasn’t the only incident in which Trump “talked about things” and suggested that the former president may have been trying to illustrate a point.

He added that how “severe” the audio is to Trump’s criminal case will depend on “what the testimony is.”