Why Senator Lee has become an ardent supporter of President Trump

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Salt Lake City, Utah- (ABC4 News) – A small delegation from Utah represented Republicans from our state in person at the Republican National Convention. Among them was Senator Mike Lee.

This year our senator is standing strong with the president, unlike four years ago.

He’s doing so at a convention like never before.

“This was the first one I’ve ever attended that has only a few hundred people in attendance, as opposed to a few thousand. It’s a much different dynamic with a crowd that small,” said Lee, (R) Utah.

Senator Lee was one of those few hundred in attendance. He pledged Utah’s delegate votes to the president.

“In Utah we love our founding fathers, and in Utah we love the idea of four more years,” he said.

The senator says he’s backing the president because of what he did for economic prosperity prior to the pandemic.

“I can trace that back to a number of things he’s done including regulatory reform, including tax reform, I’d even tie some of it to criminal justice reform. I like the path that he has taken,” Lee said.

That’s a very different approach than what we saw from the senator in 2016 when he hoped to derail Trump’s nomination.

“You’re right, I had some grave concerns about Donald Trump as he was running for office. There were a number of reasons for this.”

He says the president has won him over in the last four years.

“I still don’t agree with everything he says, I don’t agree with everything he does, and yet I’ve gotten to know him as a person. There is good in him, and he’s done some good things for the American people,” said Lee.

But, the president hasn’t won over other Republicans. Some even spoke out against him at last week’s Democratic National Convention, including former Ohio governor John Kasich.

Local Democrats are also working to defeat him in November.

“It is disappointing that so many Republican leaders have chosen to continue to support Donald Trump. His treatment towards women and people of color, towards the rule of law, towards our allies, does not comport with the history of our state nor the values of its people,” said Utah Democratic Party Chair Jeff Merchant.

Recent polls indicate Democratic nominee Joe Biden is the front runner in the race.

Republicans are hoping the messages from their convention can help close the gap.

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Glen Mills
Glen is an award-winning journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team in June 2013. You can catch him anchoring ABC4 News at 5 and 6, Monday through Friday.

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Glen Mills

Chief Political Correspondent

 Glen is honored to be delivering the news of the day every weeknight at 5, 6, and 10 in his home state. He is an award-winning veteran journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team as a weekend anchor in June 2013. Over the years, he held various positions at the station as he worked his way up to the main anchor chair. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent and hosts Inside Utah Politics, which airs every Sunday. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...