Senator: GOP Lawmakers Are More Afraid Of Being Primaried Than Speaking Out

Sen. Dick Durbin said many of his Republican colleagues are "scared to death" of President Trump's base turning on them.

Speaking with CNN’s Jim Sciutto, Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) said he believes many of his Republican colleagues are more fearful of being primaried than they fear the potential that President Donald Trump is undermining U.S. national security.

Asked if Republican lawmakers express concern over Trump’s behavior in private conversations, Durbin replied affirmatively, saying some Republicans do — particularly those who are retiring.

Why only retiring lawmakers?

“Well, because the number 85. Eighty-five percent of Republicans believe this president no matter what he says or does,” Durbin said.

He added that many incumbent Republicans are “scared to death...that those 85 percent...will turn on them in a primary,” along with fearing Trump himself will “go after them.”

"You're saying [your GOP colleagues] are more scared of the potential of being primaried than they are scared of the prospect the President is undermining US national security?" Sciutto asked bluntly.

Durbin replied: "In many instances I'm sorry, that's the case."

But the Democrat said a damning report from special counsel Robert Mueller has the power to change the situation.

“It may finally bring some of these Republican leaders — whom I work with every single day and otherwise respect terrifically — it may bring them to the point where they have to step up.”