Supporters: We’re With Trump All The Way, Even to Third Party

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (McClatchy Washington Bureau/TNS) -

There may be no line Donald Trump cannot cross.

Support for the brash Republican Party presidential front-runner is only intensifying with every provocation, such as his call to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. Many of his backers would even abandon the Republican Party if necessary to support an independent Trump for president.

“We are tired of political correctness,” one man offered. “We’re being burdened by it and it is making us weaker as a country globally, and I think he represents that voice of frustration.”

As top Republicans denounced Trump’s bid to bar Muslims from entering the country, more than half of the group said it supported the measure and credited Trump with recognizing their fears.

“Christians aren’t trying to get into other countries and blow up their coffee shops,” said R.J. Wolf, 43, of Washington. “Muslims are the only ones who are doing it. People who are totally foreign to us, yes, we need a temporary halt; that’s a reasonable position.”

Those are among the highlights from an evening spent with a focus group of past and present Trump supporters from the Washington metropolitan area – the heart of the political establishment that Trump’s candidacy threatens.

“I was stunned. These are Republicans and they’re prepared to sink the Republican Party,” said Frank Luntz, a longtime consultant to Republicans, independents such as Ross Perot and the news media. He led the two-hour-plus conversation with the 29 voters as reporters watched through a one-way mirror.

“They’re invested in him and they’re prepared to dismiss every critique,” said Luntz.

As top Republicans denounced Trump’s bid to bar Muslims from entering the country, more than half of the group said it supported the measure and credited Trump with recognizing their fears.

“Americans think the country is in crisis, Trump is telling them the country is in crisis and people flock to a strong leader when they think the country is in crisis,” one man said.