WASHINGTON (JTA) — Michael Chertoff, a homeland security secretary under President George W. Bush, endorsed Hillary Clinton for president.
The endorsement of the Democratic nominee, appearing in an interview Monday with Bloomberg News, is notable because while other Republicans, including many who have not been in government for decades, have endorsed Clinton, Chertoff was a senior Cabinet member in Bush’s second term and is known for his tough posture on terrorism.
Clinton “has good judgment and a strategic vision how to deal with the threats that face us,” Chertoff said.
Donald Trump, Chertoff said, has “misplaced” loyalties, accusing the Republican nominee of “making enemies of your friends and cozying up to your adversaries,” citing Trump’s proposal to distance the United States from NATO and his admiration for Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Chertoff, the son of a rabbi, was a lead investigator in the Whitewater investigations of Hillary Clinton and her husband, President Bill Clinton, in the 1990s.
“People can go back decades and perhaps criticize some of the judgments that were made,” Chertoff said, referring to 1990s antagonisms between the Clintons and congressional Republicans. “That is very, very insignificant compared to the fundamental issue of how to protect the country.”