Byron York, Washington Examiner, April 27, 2016
What was once furious Republican opposition to Donald Trump’s proposal to temporarily ban foreign Muslims from entering the U.S. has turned to virtual silence in the face of widespread GOP voter approval.
Exit polls from the nation’s biggest Republican primaries show impressive majority support for Trump’s proposal. In the latest example, in Pennsylvania Tuesday, 69 percent of GOP voters said they support “temporarily banning Muslims who are not U.S. citizens from entering the U.S.” In New York last week, the number was 68 percent.
In Wisconsin, 69 percent supported Trump’s idea. In Florida, 64 percent. Georgia, 68 percent. Ohio, 65 percent. Michigan, 63 percent. New Hampshire, 65 percent. Texas, 67 percent.
Huge majorities across the country in states won by Trump and states won by Ted Cruz–and even the one state won by John Kasich. If those exit polls, measuring the opinions of tens of thousands of people, are correct, the temporary foreign Muslim ban has become a Republican staple.
All of Trump’s rivals in the 2016 race said they disagreed with the proposal. Some used stronger terms than others: Jeb Bush called it “unhinged,” while others called it “idiotic,” “fascist,” “racist,” and “dangerous.” House Speaker Paul Ryan called the plan unconstitutional and “not what this party stands for and, more importantly . . . not what this country stands for.” 2012 presidential nominee Mitt Romney accused Trump of “scapegoating” Muslims. Karl Rove called it “stupid.” Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Trump’s proposal “goes against everything we believe in.”