Do They Still Make Republicans Like Tom Ridge?

Tom Ridge. Photograph by Shawn Thew

Tom Ridge. Photograph by Matt Stanley

On election night, as the foreign country around him lay sleeping, Tom Ridge stayed up all night, watching TV. “I wanted to know who my president was going to be,” he says.

Ridge was all alone in a hotel room in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, and he felt surprised but not shocked when the race was called in favor of Donald Trump. Ridge is a former military man and former governor of Pennsylvania — he viewed the crash site at Shanksville on 9/11 — and served as the nation’s first Secretary of Homeland Security. He’d been prepared for Trump’s victory by a trip he’d made back home, to Erie, prior to the election.

“I’d never seen that level of engagement and support,” he says, “for any presidential candidate.” Read more »

Tom Ridge, 49 Other Republicans: Trump Would Be a ‘Dangerous’ President

Tom Ridge, Donald Trump

You guys, seriously — this Donald Trump-for-president experiment could end really, really badly.

That’s the gist of a statement released today by 50 Republican officials who served in a variety of foreign policy or national security roles for Republican presidents, from Richard Nixon to George W. Bush. 

“From a foreign policy perspective, Donald Trump is not qualified to be president and commander-in-chief. Indeed, we are convinced that he would be a dangerous president and would put at risk our country’s national security and well-being,” the officials — including Tom Ridge, the former Pennsylvania governor and U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security — wrote. Read more »

Former Pa. Governor Tom Ridge: I’m Not Voting Republican This Year

Tom Ridge, Donald Trump

Former Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge has voted Republican every four years since his 18th birthday. He says that streak will end in 2016.

In an opinion piece published under Ridge’s name in U.S. News and World Report today, Ridge says he cannot vote for presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump in November.

“My disregard for Donald Trump has been well documented by multiple media outlets over the last several months, so I won’t belabor it yet again,” Ridge writes. “Suffice to say that I am disappointed that he is our party’s nominee. With a bumper-sticker approach to policy, his bombastic tone reflects the traits of a bully, not an American president and statesman. If he cannot unite Republicans, how can he unite America? I simply cannot endorse him.” Read more »

Tom Ridge Isn’t Impressed with Chinese Hacker Charges

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge — he was also the first Homeland Security secretary — isn’t all that impressed with federal cyberespionage charges brought by the Obama Administration against alleged Chinese hackers.

“I frankly thought indicting five Chinese military officers was a public relations stunt,” Ridge told reporters this week.“They’re not going to be extradited, and we’re not going to try them, so what’s the value? I guess there’s a public relations value, but I don’t think there’s an American alive who thinks the Chinese are just going to extradite those folks. I don’t see the strategic value of it.”

The hackers are charged with stealing more than $100 million in online attacks. (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review)