MUTZ: I’m still a proud Republican, but we must defeat Trump

Keywords Opinion / Viewpoint

I am a lifelong Republican, a former lieutenant governor, and was a member of the Indiana House and Senate for 13 years. During my tenure in public office and 40 additional years as a corporate CEO, entrepreneur and volunteer, I never voted for a Democrat for president until Donald Trump’s candidacy.

This year, I am faced with a candidate who has engaged in corruptive behavior and outright self-dealing. He has:

 Virtually destroyed our traditional network of allies, built during the world wars, and threatened the very existence of NATO, which has served as a bulwark against communism and authoritarianism for 75 years.

 Taken no action against foreign meddling in our elections. In fact, he has encouraged foreign involvement.

 Repeatedly asserted that mail-in voting is fraudulent or insecure, without evidence.

 Refused to assure the American people that he would accept the results of a free and fair election, win or lose.

 Denigrated our military leaders and our fallen heroes and POWs with language that cannot even be printed in this publication.

 Deceived the public about the dangers of COVID-19.

Character counts when evaluating a candidate. President Trump fails to meet my preference for honesty, empathy, respect for those who are different, and a willingness to admit mistakes. We deserve a president who seeks unity of purpose, who calls upon America to be “a Shining City Upon a Hill,” and for all Americans to have “malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right.” It is time to bind our nation’s wounds. We can do better.

It is very difficult to say these things about a Republican. The party has been very good to me, supporting my political ambitions and encouraging me for more than 50 years. But the future of our country is more important than party loyalty. Like many other lifelong Republicans, I find it difficult to reject my party’s nominee. Many Republicans couldn’t do it in 2016 and elected him in battleground states.

Some of us fear the Democratic candidate’s positions on a number of issues, both foreign and domestic. However, I believe the long-term damage Trump would do our democratic republic form of government is more worrisome than policy differences. In short, we could be headed toward an authoritarian state.

In raising these concerns, I am not rejecting my traditional Republican principles—specifically, a system of laws, not men; sanctity of contracts; private property; limited government; a free press; freedoms as enumerated in the First and Second Amendments; and a sound national defense based on partnerships with like-minded allies.

I am not leaving my party. Instead, I am following my conscience. Evil does prevail when good men and women do nothing. So, it is my conclusion that we must defeat Donald J. Trump and rebuild the Republican Party. Now is the time to come to the aid of our party and the United States of America.•


Mutz is a former lieutenant governor of Indiana.

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55 thoughts on “MUTZ: I’m still a proud Republican, but we must defeat Trump

  1. So, you’re voting for Biden, eh?! Funny you denigrate Trump for his character, but don’t address his competitor. You’re an old RINO with an axe to grind. No good republican could even consider a vote for the Green New Deal and the far-left platform (or lack thereof) of a Biden presidency. You are out of your mind if you think Trump will be worse for America than Biden despite your cronies in DC getting run from the swamp. Shallow hit piece here.

    1. I love it when people slap the RINO label on anyone who looks thru the constant lies and “just win, baby,” b.s. of Donald Trump, and calls it like it is. Remember: he was a D until 2015. The people you call “old,” Ryan, are in fact experienced. Heck, you’d call Lincoln a RINO based on his ideology. I’m a lifelong registered Republican, and you and your fellow party loyalists have been completely duped by that arrogant Pied Piper and forgotten what it’s like to put the Constitution first. If you’re foolish enough to think Mutz is a RINO, then here’s one for you: AINO. (American In Name Only.)

    2. Mr. Mutz, you must have had ten minutes to knock this opinion out, this is just made up of 24 hour news channels “opinions”. I agree with Ryan H; who is worse between Trump & Biden ? Biden, aside from a 50+ political career, never achieved anything except for favors for Delaware. It’s really no wonder that you never sought office above Lt. Governor. You never had the support. Your opinion does not carry much more weight. – Steven Pettinga Indianapolis.

  2. Your cable channel must be stuck on MSNBC. I don’t consider our allies much of an ally if they don’t even contribute their portion of funding to help defend their own land. After 75 years it’s time to re-evaluate who our friends really are. Election meddling by foreign powers has been going on for decades and what little advertising buys any of them did was a fractional amount compared to what was spent on the 2016 election. Yet I don’t hear you talking about all the illegal contributions that Hillary took in through heir front of a Foundation or the unchecked contributions flowing into the Biden campaign. The Democrats with their attempted coup have done more to undermine the integrity of our elections than any foreign power could ever hope to do. The democrats have been moaning and have refused to accept the results of the 2016 election, including at the state levels, can you say Stacey Abrams? Mail-in voting rife with potential fraud and it has been proven to be chaotic and fraudulent, how many ballots were found in a ditch in Pennsylvania yesterday??? If you’re referring to the Atlantic article, the one that got all the headlines when it came out, but no mention once the author retracted his assurance that his unidentified witnesses are now not reliable. Trump loves military leaders, not political-military leaders, there is a difference (can you say, Colin Powell?). President Trump was so far ahead of everyone else int he US on moving us forward to address the pandemic without creating a Nationwide panic by shutting down travel from China, building ventilators and other PPE equipment needed by the front line nurses and doctors taking care of the sick. If you remember the initial estimate of the number of U.S. deaths was 2.2 Million people, we just recently exceed 200,000. Looks to me like he has saved 2 million lives so far. That’s if you can even trust a number that encourages and financially incentivizes hospitals to list COVID as the cause of death.

    You might state that the party left you, when in fact you are part of the party that has left us. That has allowed our jobs to be exported around the world, that has refused to take a stand on illegal immigration, allowed our educational system to be turned into an indoctrination system, allowed one bad trade deal after another, allowed our enemies to become emboldened because we don’t know how to end a war. All this while President Trump has brought peace to the Middle East eliminated known terrorist, stopped mass illegal immigration, brought jobs back to America, renegotiated NAFTA to the benefit of the USA, has eliminated 1000’s of economic stifling regulations, made the US the net exporter of oil, moved our embassy to Jerusalem. Trump is a man of action, which I can understand is shocking for a politician that is used to business as usual. While we would always love to have your vote, RINO’s do us more harm than good..

    1. Lacking a lot of critical thinking here. Repeating his own talking points doesn’t make Trump a good president.

    2. Come on Don enough with the facts, let them live in there own reality of cancel culture, identity politics and critical race theory.

    3. +100000 Don. Not to mention that in renegotiating NAFTA Trump also required companies in Mexico to allow union representation, increased wages in Mexico. Why Trump isn’t touting his work for the unions in Mexico is beyond me.

      Moving the embassy to Jerusalem was a big deal also and now other countries are following suit. The Jewish voters in the US should be rejoicing that he had the nerve to do that against everyone saying it would start another war.

    4. Don Barton. Congratulations on having completely bought into the right wing “Fake News” media machine.

      Ask yourself if your brother told you a big fib that you could easily confirm with Mom or Dad, and then he told you “Mom and Dad are going to lie to you”. Who do you think will benefit from believing that?

      Now if the right wing media machine told you something you relied on for decades, “Main Stream Media” is “Fake News, who is going to benefit from that lie?

      You need to see help or counseling from a trusted mentor, or clergy, or close friend. You are being manipulated by right wing media.

      When Trump told everyone that the “virus is a hoax” and 200,000 people are dead, who do you think is lying?

      There are some people that have NOT bought into the lies and now they are telling you Trump is wrong. Perhaps they rejected the “Fake News” propaganda and are trying to tell you the truth.

    5. Dan M. – What I know is that I was told by the MSM for over 3 years that Trump colluded with Russia, only to find out that it was the Obama administration and the FBI that lied and created the fake investigation and documentation that is beginning to finally come out, the MSM has all the sudden lost interest in the story or the FACTS. What I know is that I don’t hear on the MSM that wage growth in 2019 what the largest ever for minorities, that unemployment for African Americans and Latinos was at historical lows. Of course, this may all be new to you as well since you choose to listen to the admittedly biased MSM. Glad I could help expand your knowledge.

  3. Wow. Cue the cult members disparaging John Mutz and attacking his character. Accuse him of corruption, blah, blah, blah… Add him to the list of traitors along with Dick Lugar, Dan Coats, et al. This is turning into 1930’s Italy.
    It’s a sick sad time we live in.

    1. It’s truly disturbing. Especially because they somehow believe that the Democrats are equally bad. I’ve met Trump supporters who legitimately think that Biden will turn America into Venezuela. I think a lot of these people actually want to be Germany or Italy in the early 30’s though.

  4. Wow – John Mutz doesn’t like Trump?! I think I’ll change my vote too! Hahaha, like John Mutz’s opinion matters right now anyway. His bullet points could just as equally translate to the other side as well. Moving along…

    1. Yeah, Mutz is clearly stuck on things like “honor”, “honesty”, “courage”, “respect”, “leadership”, “dignity”, “restraint”, and other archaic personal qualities we don’t need in a President.

    2. It is sad to see Mutz go downhill like this in his twilight years – was this written from a nursing home?

  5. Really! Most of the posts in this thread display a silliness unworthy of angry four year olds. It’s fine to disagree with anyone, but surely one can do so in a more dignified fashion. Not to say respectful.

    I am newly arrived from out of state and think (much) better of Hoosiers than these posts imply.

    Meanwhile, I think Mr. Mutz brings up a lot we all need to consider, whatever our emotional dispositions.

    1. Welcome to Indiana, Kai. And yes, there is plenty of common sense and respectful dialogue in this state. Lots of great people. But some of the lunatics on this board would’ve called Lincoln a “RINO,” because (gasp!) his ideology was nothing even close to the authoritarian babble, right-wing pandering of this so-called leader.

  6. Wow. I would have never thought something like this would come from John Mutz! Even if he feels this way, why not just keep his trap shut? No one cares what he thinks but his poisonous spewing from the mouth is nauseating. Sad.

  7. There are only two differences between Donald Trump and most other Republican pols. One, he’s not a milquetoast who watches what he says lest the New York Times write something mean about him, and two, he actually means what he says. Those two qualities rub some members of the club, like Mr Mutz, the wrong way. Too bad.

    If you go to the trouble of calling yourself a Republican, when being a Democrat means never having to say you’re sorry, then I assume you care about things like originalist judicial appointees, 2nd amendment rights, fair trade deals, and pro-life policies, because Republicans have been campaigning on those things for decades. Well, Trump has delivered on those things; heck, he’s even flipped the 9th Circus! So either RINOs like Mr Mutz here haven’t been paying attention, or, and more likely, they really never believed in any of those things, they just said them to the rubes and hicks out here in flyover country (in other words, us) to get votes. And that, dear readers, is why RINOS like this guy could publicly endorse an empty suit like Joe Biden.

    1. Well said, Keith. The concept of accomplishments in both domestic and foreign policy blows past the swamp. Trump is tough, and the left hates him for his stellar achievements. He managed this during Moeller and fake impeachment – anything to thwart his agenda. The press never reports what Trump has done. I check CNN and MSNBC, and they had Covid reruns on during the historic mideast peace deal. The networks are all slanted. If Biden were to happen to get in, it won’t be long before they take the vaudeville hook to him to put in Harris – the real candidate. Trump is not a wordsmith, but he achieves despite all who oppose him.

    2. Congratulations on having completely bought into the right wing “Fake News” media machine.
      Ask yourself if your brother told you a big fib that you could easily confirm with Mom or Dad, and then he told you “Mom and Dad are going to lie to you”. Who do you think will benefit from believing that?
      Now if the right wing media machine told you something you relied on for decades, “Main Stream Media” is “Fake News, who is going to benefit from that lie?
      You need to see help or counseling from a trusted mentor, or clergy, or close friend. You are being manipulated by right wing media.
      When Trump told everyone that the “virus is a hoax” and 200,000 people are dead, who do you think is lying?
      There are some people that have NOT bought into the lies and now they are telling you Trump is wrong. Perhaps they rejected the “Fake News” propaganda and are trying to tell you the truth.

  8. I truly hope that when Trump wins again, the life-long Democrats wake up to the Fact that what was at one time a viable political party is now a bunch of fanatics controlled by Coastal Elitists who consider Indiana (that’s you!) nothing more than fly-over fodder. Don’t believe me? List all their mouthpieces:
    Biden, Harris, Schumer, Pelosi, AOC, Bernie, Warren, Schiff, Cuomo, DiBlassio, Nadler, Newsome, Feinstein, etc are at the top. All coastal clowns. The one person with a small lick of sense was Indiana’s Buttegieg who was (predictably) drummed out of the process. These idealouges don’t care about the interior 40 +/- states other than as donation states to bail out their miserable failed policies and horrid governance in the coastal turf they represent. They don’t even campaign here any more. WAKE UP!!
    Now we add a few politicians like Mutz, Kasich, Flake, etc. who have fed out of the Republican trough most of their lives joining this cabal?? Good riddance to them. Newsflash to Mutz Et Al: No thinking Republican is going to line up behind you. The old parable about it being better to keep quiet lest people think you a fool is appropriate here.

  9. John Mutz’ Republican credentials are immense and decades long. He and I have not agreed on a number of political issues, but he has always been an honorable and thoughtful person who is highly accomplished and serves his community in multiple ways. His statement had to be very difficult for him which speaks to his character to do what he thinks is right for our nation, regardless of the cruel comments he knew would come. He stated his objections substantively and without rancor. It’s sad that some could not follow his example.

    He joins an ever-growing list of Republicans, retired military and intelligence and justice department officials, conservative columnists, former White House staff, and former Trump organization employees who recognize Donald Trump’s authoritarian instincts and are taking steps to stop him before we pass the point of no return.

    It was scary when people like Dan Coats and General James Mattis left the administration under duress. It was scarier when recordings of the President’s own words revealed he knowlingly put American lives in jeopardy over COVID. Now the chief staffer of the COVID task force (a life-long Republican) has resigned rather than be complicit in Presidential pressures on doctors and medical researchers to mislead the public for the President’s short-term political benefit.

    It was highly distressing to learn that the Commander-in-chief called our troops and veterans insulting names (as confirmed by multiple news agencies including Fox News). I cannot even imagine how demoralizing that is to our soldiers in Afghanistan and other dangerous locations. I’d rather not base my vote on insults, but in this case, they are dangerous to our troops and national defense.

    The President hasn’t listened to rounds of his own staff and administration officials who tried to help him protect the nation’s best interests and his own credibility. Now he says he won’t listen to the voters either on a peaceful transition of power to a successor. That’s not how our democracy works – IF we can keep it.

    Our founding fathers warned that if we trade liberty for security (on policy or politics), we’ll end up losing both. John Mutz has sounded the alarm to follow that foundational advice. I hope we’re listening to him. Election day could be our last chance.

    1. …yes, very well said! It’s very interesting Republicans are eating there own because they see Trump for who he is, and the absolute trampling of the precarious balance and respect to laws that has governed others, recognizing that the position holds a lot of trust that the President will work within the real or respected political guardrails, not the fantasy they’ve created, that see his leadership as a big thumb in the eye of this democratic republic or “owning the libs”.

      Democracy needs leadership that is guided by an individual that shows difference and empathy for all Americans even when ideology is diametrically opposed.

      This country is still an experiment and can still be exploited by an authoritarian who wants to consolidate power, so recognizing that there is a clear threat by this presidency to this democratic republic is exercising prudent judgement, especially by leaders who understand the danger of the above mentioned boundaries Trump continues to step outside of, not to mention an unprecedented level of corruption by former campaign staff and indicted members of his close associates. The phrase you are you you hang out with, rings close to this man. These things are not coincidence or bad luck, he chose them, yet never takes responsibility for his own choices and decisions.

      The reality after this NY Times tax exposé, instead of being an unindicted co-conspirator named individual-1 in election fraud, we have the real prospect of a President or former President jailed for tax evasion.

      This is all sad for this nation! We can do better, this nation deserves better!

  10. Mr.Mutz…so you do not like Trump, that is okay. Don’t vote for him. You say you cannot vote for him because of XY and Z. Again, that is fine. Go for it, this is America, you get to vote for whoever you want. But, if you can tell us why you cannot vote for Trump, then can you please take a few minutes and also tell us why you are voting for Biden! I would love to hear why you are supporting Biden, but please do it without mentioning a single word about Trump. Whenever the Democrats are asked to list Biden’s accomplishments, they only spew their hatred for Trump. Please make your vote for Biden stand on Biden’s merits only. Please tell us. Is it for his record in Congress? For his many racist comments on record throughout his 47 year political career? For his lethargic record as a Vice President? If you say it wasn’t lethargic, then please enlighten us of his accomplishments while being our VP. Every time you hear complaints about Trump, people like you and the press can never back up your vote for Biden based upon his qualities and/or accomplishments. Before you answer, do you need time to research what this guy named Biden has actually done over his 47 year career in government? It is okay, we will wait. And folks, by the way, while you are waiting, do yourself a special favor and take a couple minutes of your time and go to the Antifa website. Just type in: Oh and if that isn’t enough for you, then please go to the BLM website to see who is one of the largest beneficiaries of the BLM donors. If after seeing this you still want to vote for Biden then good luck with your vote.

  11. As more of the news comes out it appears the person you are choosing to vote for meddled in the election, not President Trump. Are you afraid when the swamp drains you may be exposed? As far as Holcomb, he has hurt IN more with his response to the China Flu and yet you say you will vote for him, on his payroll? RINO

  12. What’s up with Indianapolis Business Journal’s new campaign to smoke out RINO Republicans to speak out against President Donald Trump? This first former Lt. Governor John Mutz and now a hit piece from Scott Newman, posted in today’s IBJ Weekly.

    Consider this, all you RINOs and their acolytes out there: In 25 years, Joe Biden will certainly be dead (his brain will likely die before that, given his easily-observed early-stage dementia) and Donald Trump may well be dead. But The United States of America will most likely still exist in one form or another. And what form do you want that to be? The increasingly leftist tilt proposed and undoubtedly likely to be enacted by Democrats with the attendant loss of The Right to Bear Arms, the Right to Life, and onerous taxes imposed to finance their secular-humanist agenda, or some extension of the country we now enjoy?

    I’ve never seen such short-sightedness from a party that normally plays the long game for the good of the country. Every so-called Republican bailing on Donald Trump and encouraging a vote for Biden and the extreme leftist Kamala Harris deserves the tortuous life they’ll be forced to lead for having done so. It’s too bad those of us who can see farther than the ends of our noses will have to share that misery. I must agree that people accusing Indianapolis Business Journal of tilting left as did The Indianapolis Star once it was sold to Gannett, may have a valid point.

    Should I hold my breath waiting for IBJ to publish opposing views from local Republicans who care about the future of this country beyond the 2020 election? Probably not. How sad, when it appeared for awhile that there would be a decent local news source better than The Indianapolis Star. (Admittedly, The Star keeps lowering the bar with every issue!)

  13. John, thank you for your courage and your strength to stand for what is right.
    Some people will follow dysfunction simply for the sake of their so called tribe regardless of the tribal leader is a source of evil and ill intent.
    I appreciate you reminding us what Republicans should stand for.
    Republican principles—specifically, a system of laws, not men; sanctity of contracts; private property; limited government; a free press; freedoms as enumerated in the First and Second Amendments; and a sound national defense based on partnerships with like-minded allies.

  14. Boy, you Trumplicans sure attack when a former member sees the light and acknowledges an error in prior judgment. This further affirms your sycophantic support for Trump and bias against free speech.

  15. Where are the Sam Nunn’s ; the John Glenn’s of the Democratic Party. If today’s Democrat is talking they’re lying; they have zero credibility and an idiot running the house. John Mutz became irrelevant when Evan Bayh took him out In the gubernatorial election and he’s never been able to find his way back. I’m not sure many even knew you were still around. I shouldn’t

  16. There is so much wrong with Mr. Mutz’s editorial, it is hard to know where to start. Much has been said already about Trump’s accomplishments, his challenging approach to the status quo (which career pol’s like Mutz love), and the pure hatred he has had to contend with and inability of dem’s to accept the 2016 result.
    The thing I cannot understand with people like Mutz is that by voting for Biden he is voting for the stated dem platform which if he took the time to read it he would realize that it contradicts everything that this country stands for—midwestern values, perseverance, self determination, many freedoms we enjoy today, the rewards of hard work and success. The democratic platform is simply promising everything to everybody and gaining immense power in a socialist state which time and time again has failed elsewhere.
    So since that is what Mr. Mutz is for, we really do not need him in the Republican Party, and Mr. Mutz don’t you dare call yourself a Republican

  17. President Trump’s supporters are attracted by his unconventional approach to politics and governance because for the last 25 years, since Ronald Reagan was President, there has been little fundamental “meaningful” difference between Republican and Democrat presidential candidates. For President Trump supporters this condition has boiled down to “no real choice”.
    President Trump supporters like the fact that he came into office extreme wealthy and has not “built wealth” while in office, like the Clinton’s and Obama’s, as well as many life-long “career politicians” in both houses, most of whom take office with very little personal wealth, spend a lifetime career in politics and government, and build massive personal wealth in the process. Supporters of Donald Trump also like:
    1) That he has sought a genuine “level economic playing field” with trading partners like China … vs. the former status quo of very poor negotiated outcomes for American citizens.(His trade war actions would not have needed to be nearly as drastic if our elected officials had not negotiated extremely poor agreements for the past 20+ years, which left us in a nearly hopeless trade position).
    2) That he has enacted policies that grow the economy which has had the outcome of lowering unemployment levels to historical low levels, especially for Black and minority segments of the population.
    3) That he takes on all adversaries, especially the mainstream media that picks and chooses what news to present, based on their elitist, subjective concept of how the world should work … according to them.
    4) That he is an accomplished entrepreneur that has experienced both success and failure but is undaunted and picks himself up no matter the situation to pursue success through pure grit, determination, and ambition, which embodies “the American way” for many Americans.
    5) That he has confidence and faith in American citizens to be successful by working hard and determining how to succeed without government intervention that “picks the winners and losers”.
    6) That he values law and order because that is what separates civilized societies, as imperfect as they may be, from uncivilized societies.
    President Trump has put the status quo “swamp” of both parties on notice that America deserves more than their brand of wink-wink, nod-nod accommodation politics and governance. He has demonstrated an alternative and has gained support by doing so. In the process he has stepped on many toes from those on both sides of the aisle. His supporters also find it ironic that he is accused and prosecuted for interfering in the due process of elections, when Hillary Clinton who opposed him, was the candidate with smashed cell phones and computer servers compromised by Russian operatives. His supporters also find it ironic that he is accused of not accepting election outcomes, when in fact it is the Democrat Party leadership, as well as some prominent Republicans that have not accepted he was elected, to the point of spending millions of tax payer money on investigations, impeachment proceedings that failed to deliver a conviction, and daily opposition to nearly every decision he makes, and as a result, failed to fulfill their obligations to legislate and govern while doing so. His opposition could not beat him at the voting booth so they took matters into their own hands by attempting to kick him out of office … and failed.
    President Trump’s supporters don’t always like his “bull in the china shop” (no pun intended) approach to governance, but they are willing to overlook those imperfections because they support his policies and the positive results he delivers to the American people. His supporters also believe that the socialist leaning vision of the Democrats, and some Republicans, would be the ruination of this great nation.

  18. I was shocked when I read the opinions of John Mutz and Scott C. Newman in the September 25, 2020 edition of the Indianapolis Business Journal (IBJ). Both of these opinions read as if they were cliff notes of the liberal mainstream talking points. Mr. Mutz accused President Trump of “Virtually destroyed our traditional network of allies ..” without any evidence of such. He goes on to say, “…and threatened the very existence of NATO.” I believe this is a stretch of what the real facts are. Like a good businessperson, Trump did take a strong position and as a result was able to get the other members of NATO to begin to honor their financial obligations – which they had not been doing. The remaining four bullet points made by Mr. Mutz. are not substantiated by any evidence. I am shocked that Mr. Mutz thinks that electing Biden, as our next president, will result in rebuilding the Republican party and the United States of America.
    Mr. Newman’s opinion was no better; it was full of unsubstantiated positions. To say, “… we know for certain Trump Is not worth of our trust.” Is odd. I trust President Trump to: negotiate trade agreements that are fair and equitable for the United States, to be a leader in forging peace treaties around the world, to reduce the cost of drugs and, through sound fiscal policies, create a sound economy and employment opportunities for all citizens regardless of sex or ethnicity. All of which he has done.

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