JD Vance, the controversial author of the not-quite-a-memoir “Hillbilly Elegy” author has apologized for a former political position: critic of Donald Trump.
Vance is a former US Marine and venture capitalist who has attracted strong backing from right-wing tech billionaire Peter Thiel. He announced his run for Senate in Ohio last week. “Hillbilly Elegy” was a bestseller in 2016 that was made into a widely-panned movie for Netflix despite the acting nominations it garnered for its two leads, Amy Adams and Glenn Close. Vance wrote of the chaos that can haunt a family with generational memory of deep poverty, but it was later revealed that he had embellished several passages of his book to make his family situation seem worse than it actually was.
The dubiously honored author-turned-Republican Senate candidate appeared on Fox News on Monday and began his apology tour with a statement that fits right in with his opportunistic default settings. “Like a lot of people, I criticized Trump back in 2016,” Vance told Fox News on Monday. “And I ask folks not to judge me based on what I said in 2016, because I’ve been very open that I did say those critical things and I regret them, and I regret being wrong about the guy.”
What a complete F sellout you are.
This POS will literally say or do ANYTHING to get elected.
— Don Winslow (@donwinslow) July 5, 2021
And yet last week, deleted tweets from 2016 unearthed by CNN showed Vance calling Trump’s views on immigrants and Muslims “reprehensible” and saying he would vote for Evan McMullin, an independent conservative.
Everyone retweet this.
JD Vance is posing as a Trumper to run for Senate, and he really, really doesn’t want anyone to see that he knew Trump was a fraud & voted for Evan McMullin in 2016. How do we know? He just deleted this five-year-old tweet ahead of his campaign kickoff. pic.twitter.com/1Y0A7mGzpH
— Heath Mayo (@HeathMayo) July 1, 2021
But Vance didn’t just keep his criticisms to tweets. In 2016, Vance wrote in USA Today that “Trump’s actual policy proposals, such as they are, range from immoral to absurd.” He also called Trump “cultural heroin,” who “makes some feel better for a bit,” in a piece that year for The Atlantic.
Follow American politics for five decades, as I have, and one gets inured to hypocrisy. But JD Vance, Nikki Haley and Elise Stefanik have taken rank hypocrisy to a remarkable level. Remarkable and despicable. Amoral, grasping hyper-ambition.
— Norman Ornstein (@NormOrnstein) July 6, 2021
A possible opponent in the 2022 Ohio Senate race, the Democratic congressman Tim Ryan, tweeted that he and Vance “have exactly one thing in common – neither of us voted for Donald Trump”. But Vance told Fox News that he regrets being “wrong” about Trump all along.
“I ask folks not to judge me based on what I said in 2016, because I’ve been very open that I did say those critical things and I regret them, and I regret being wrong about the guy. I think he was a good president, I think he made a lot of good decisions for people and I think he took a lot of flak,” Vance said on camera where other people could hear him, and those people all rolled their eyes at once and yelled “Riiiight” at the screen.
— T👻r👻 D🐈⬛bl💀n 🎃🧙🏻♀️ (@taradublinrocks) July 6, 2021
From now on, the only good part of JD Vance running for office will be the Twitter dragging. It’s definitely more entertaining than the hunk of celluloid crap they made from his book of Appalachian lies.
it’s not everyday that you see somebody who is ugly, an embarrassment to his community, a fuckin loser, AND a sellout.
but jd vance goes bravely into that space.
— caleb hearon (@calebsaysthings) July 6, 2021
Deleted from the day of Access Hollywood, "Lord help us." pic.twitter.com/5ooexbNUhn
— andrew kaczynski (@KFILE) July 1, 2021
Thank you @davidaxelrod. Exactly this.👇 Fuck you @JDVance1. Selling your soul to Donald Trump to become a United States Senator? Pathetic. I know I lost everything by publicly opposing Trump. But at least I can sleep at night. https://t.co/s9mIKaJgRz
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) July 5, 2021
.@JDVance1 wrote a book accusing the rich and powerful of looking at people he grew up with as fools. Now that he's rich and powerful, @JDVance1 is trying to play the people he grew with as fools. It won't work.
— stuart stevens (@stuartpstevens) July 6, 2021