“Ever since they started denying the election result, I kind of knew it was heading this way,” said Demme, the county’s former Republican Party chairman who has opposed President Donald Trump and is now an independent. “If they kept going, I knew there’s no way I can keep going. But if you’ve been a Republican all your life, it’s hard to jump out of a big boat and into a little boat.”
Officials are seeing similar scenes unfold elsewhere…
“I do think there’s a palpable shift, from knee-jerk defense of the president to ‘wow, that was a bridge too far,’” said Kirk Adams, the former Republican speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives.
Adams said he knew several people, including once-solid Trump supporters, who are switching their registrations. He said it may be weeks or months before the full impact of the insurrection is clear.