New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) on Sunday expressed his opposition of former President Trump’s argument that a president should have total immunity, saying, “everybody should be concerned” with the former president’s view.
Asked on NBC’s “Meet the Press” if he agrees a president should have total immunity, “even for things that cross the line,” Sununu said, “Of course not.”
Sununu was played a clip of Trump’s comments over the weekend at a rally in New Hampshire, where he argued a president should be allowed immunity so “that [the] president can act and do what he feels and what his group of advisors feel is the absolute right thing.”
“The amazing thing about that clip is he was dead serious. He wasn’t even making one of his ridiculous jokes. He was dead serious about that,” Sununu reacted. “And that should give everybody — I don’t care what political party you’re from, whether you’re an extreme conservative or a socialist liberal — everybody should be concerned with that type of mentality going into the White House.”
Sununu has endorsed Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley for president, but earlier this month, he said he would support the eventual nominee, even if it is Trump as a hypothetical convicted felon.
NBC anchor Kristen Welker pointed to Sununu’s pledge of support for the eventual nominee and asked the governor how he could back Trump given his disagreement with the former president’s argument.
“Look, at the end of the day, I think most Republicans are going to get behind the Republican nominee,” Sununu responded. “I’m hoping that it’s obviously Nikki Haley. This is how bad Joe Biden is. Six months ago Trump couldn’t beat Biden. This is how bad Joe Biden is.”
Trump and his legal team have repeatedly argued his actions leading up to and surrounding the Jan. 6 insurrection are protected by presidential immunity. The former president is facing four felony counts in a federal election subversion case over allegations he was involved in a conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and stood at the center of a campaign to block the certification of votes for President Biden on Jan. 6, 2021.
Trump’s legal team has asked a D.C. appeals court to toss the case on the grounds of presidential immunity. Special counsel Jack Smith asked the U.S. Supreme Court to take up the argument to keep the trial on track to begin in March, but the high court ruled the case should first be considered by the D.C. appeals court.
The appeals court heard the arguments earlier this month and seemed poised to reject the former president’s argument.
Welker pressed Sununu again on how he could support a candidate whom he has said he believed contributed to the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol insurrection.
Sununu repeated an argument he’s used in recent weeks, claiming “no one’s really thinking about the general election,” and instead pushed voters to ensure Trump isn’t elected as the GOP nominee.
“We’re here in New Hampshire in the first nation primary,” he said, adding later that if you want to beat Trump, it “has to happen at the ballot box.”
“Don’t sit on your couch, don’t wait for it to happen. Don’t wait for some external factor or court case to take over. You have to get out and vote, whether you’re undeclared, [or] Republican.”
All eyes are on Sununu’s New Hampshire, which will hold its primary this Tuesday. A polling index maintained by The Hill and Decision Desk HQ shows Trump with a 11.1 point lead over Haley in the Granite State, while Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis trails far behind.