Once Famous Trump Supporters Who Now Can't Stand Him

The 2020 Presidential election signaled waning American support for then-President Donald Trump. While he has developed friendships with many other celebs throughout his career, those friendships inevitably changed when Trump ran for President. Some love him. Some hate him. And some have felt both. As is the case with everyday Americans, a host of conservative celebs are dyed-in-the-wool Trump supporters. The likes of Kid Rock, Ted Nugent, and Scott Baio remain die-hard "Trumpers," and MTO News alleged that rapper Lil' Wayne's girlfriend broke up with him in large part due to his continued support of Trump. 

Conversely, The Apprentice host has also seen some of the initial celebrity support he had in the politi-sphere waning along with that of the electorate as a whole. With so many controversial comments and actions during his Presidency, it's no real wonder why so many celebrities and former Trump Administration officials have denounced him. The New York Times reports the main reasons voters who supported Trump in 2016 no longer support him are his response to the coronavirus, his response to race relations, and his personal character. A Reddit thread asking ex-Trump supporters why they jumped off of the Trump train received more than 27,000 responses ranging from, "I learned empathy" to, "The gassing of protesters for a photo op at a church" to, "Gestures broadly at everything." 

We discovered the reasons why these following celebrities rescinded their support of Donald Trump.

Clay Aiken apologized for supporting Trump

Clay Aiken got to know Donald Trump when he appeared as a contestant on Celebrity Apprentice. Aiken, a Democrat, didn't endorse Trump in 2016, but he did speak positively about his Apprentice boss' candidacy early in the process, telling Billboard in August 2015, "Anybody who discounts him is shortsighted." Aiken, who ran for Congress as a Democrat in 2014 (coming in second place), never agreed with Trump on politics but looked upon him fondly. The singer told FOX Business in March 2016, "I like him as a person. I always say he's like the uncle that gets drunk at the wedding and embarrasses you. You still love him, but you wish he'd shut up."  Aiken clearly believed he was standing up for a stand-up guy.

Fast forward to August 2017, and Aiken changed his tune, posting an apology on Twitter for having defended Trump against accusations of racism. He wrote, "Remember all those times I defended @realDonaldTrump and believed he was not actually racist? Well... I am a f*****g dumbass. #imsorry"  The singer later added another tweet clarifying his prior Trump support as being only in terms of defending Trump against accusations of racism, not in support of his policy positions. "I've always thought he would be a dumpster fire as a president," Aiken wrote, "and I was right about that. I just didn't think he was racist. #wrong."

Caitlyn Jenner is 'disappointed' in Trump

Caitlyn Jenner says she received more flack for coming out as a Republican than she did for coming out as transgender. Still, she supported Donald Trump's candidacy in 2016. In April 2017, Jenner said on Late Night with Seth Meyers that she had spoken with Trump about LGBTQ+ issues before to the Inauguration and was disappointed he "all of a sudden," during his first month in office, repealed the protections granted to transgender students via Title IX.

Jenner insisted her ultimate loyalty is with the LGBTQ+ community but that she doesn't vote based on only those issues, stating, "I believe in little things like the Constitution and freedom. I believe in minimal government ... Republicans have done a better job in that direction." Jenner also told Meyers she refused an invitation to play golf with Trump after the Title IX action but admitted it was largely because she would "get destroyed by the community" for a public outing with Trump.

Even staunch-conservative Jenner finally had enough when, in July 2017, Trump banned transgender people from serving in the military. In an opinion piece for The Washington Post, Jenner admitted she was wrong in thinking Trump would support the LGBTQ+ community and said Trump treated them as "political pawns as he whips up animus against us in an attempt to energize the most right-wing segment of his party." Jenner told TMZ she planned to lose the MAGA hat for good. That's one less thing for this ex-Kardashian to keep up with.

Kanye West took off his MAGA hat

Another Kardashian clan member, Kanye West, lent his support to Donald Trump in the 2016 election, to the dismay of many fans, according to Complex. West met with Trump during the Presidential transition period to discuss "multicultural issues," but CNN reports West deleted all of his previous pro-Trump tweets in December 2016. Their communication did not end there, though, nor did West's support for Trump disappear with those tweets. Praise for Trump would pop up on West's social media throughout much of Trump's four-year term, to the appreciation of POTUS, but ultimately disappeared in July 2020. The Yeezy designer said in a revealing interview with Forbes that he no longer supports Trump and that he was "taking the red hat off, with this interview."

Just a few days before the Forbes article was released, on the Fourth of July, West announced via a tweet he would be running for President but ultimately dropped out of the race. West's Presidential run was widely panned as a spoiler campaign intended to siphon black voters from Joe Biden, which West ultimately admitted to Forbes was true. 

He did manage to collect about 60,000 votes in states where his name was on the ballot. West "conceded" on election night, as Rolling Stone reports, and says he will run for President again because he's destined for the position. The rapper told Forbes, "God appoints the president ... If I win in 2024 then that was God's appointment."

Jesse Ventura does not like being compared to Trump

"Bunch of crooks." That's how former WWE wrestler Jesse "The Body" Ventura refers to politicians in the two major parties, according to Twin Cities Pioneer Press, and that was probably the most complimentary thing he had to say about politicians. The former Minnesota Governor, who ran as the Reform Party candidate and pulled off a shocking upset by winning the 1998 gubernatorial election, is an old friend of Donald Trump's. By October 2020, though, Ventura had simply had enough.

A staunch independent, Ventura wrote an opinion piece for CNBC in July 2016 about his support of Libertarian Presidential Gary Johnson, but the former wrestler's allegiance was a bit more nebulous in 2015, and CNN reports he made some complimentary remarks about Trump's candidacy — in a relatively transparent attempt to entice Trump to select him as his Vice Presidential running mate. He wrote a piece for TIME in August 2016 saying he's happy to see Trump destroying the GOP.

Also a notorious critic of the media, Ventura has been compared to Trump in recent years — a comparison he does not seem to like. In November 2018, he told MPR News, "It's hogwash." Steven Bosacker, Ventura's former Chief of Staff, shot it down more emphatically, saying, "Jesse Ventura is colorful. He's not corrupt."

Did Tom Brady lose his golfing buddy?

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and Donald Trump have been golfing buddies for years. Trump supported Brady throughout deflate-gate (via FOX Sports), and the quarterback, in kind, supported his friend's Presidential candidacy. In September 2015, CNN reported a "Make America Great Again" hat had been photographed in Brady's locker and posted on Twitter by a Barstool Sports reporter. Asked by reporters whether he thought Trump has what it takes to become President, Brady answered, "I hope so. That would be great." He called his MAGA hat "a nice keepsake" (via ESPN).

But Trump's comments about the NFL players kneeling during the National Anthem to protest police brutality put Brady in a tough spot. After the Patriots won Super Bowl 51, Brady did not attend the White House ceremony with other members of the team. The statement he provided to NBC News said he was "attending to some personal family matters." In a tit-for-tat, Trump didn't mention Brady's name that day.

In September 2017, Brady spoke with WEEI's radio show, Kirk & Callahan, where he revealed (via TMZ) that he thought Trump's rhetoric on the issue was divisive, adding "I just want to support my teammates and ... I do believe in what I believe in, and I believe in bringing people together and respect and love and trust, and those are the values that my parents instilled in me."

Arnold Schwarzenegger thinks Trump should be 'terminated'

Former Republican California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger withdrew his support for Donald Trump following the release of the infamous Access Hollywood tape. He released a statement on Twitter that read, "For the first time since I became a citizen in 1983, I will not vote for the Republican candidate for President."

But the chasm between Schwarzenegger and Trump was more complicated than a mere celebrity feud because Schwarzenegger took over as host of The Apprentice in 2016. (The Hollywood Reporter reveals his catchphrase when letting contestants go was, "You're terminated. Get to the chopper.") Then President-elect Trump went on a Twitter tirade against the Governator in January 2017, touting his own previous high ratings as host of the show and lambasting his replacement's performance (via The Hollywood Reporter).

The feuding continued. In March 2017, in a video posted to Twitter, Schwarzenegger admonished Trump and trolled him about his then 37% approval ratings, saying, "I mean, when you take away after-school programs for children and Meals on Wheels for the poor people, that's not what you call, 'Making America great again.' Come on! I mean, who is advising you?" The Terminator actor was asked by Men's Health why Trump can't seem to let the feud go, he answered, "I think he really — he's in love with me. That's the reality of it. With Trump, he wants to be me."

Dave Chappelle was 'disgusted by the tone of the election'

The Friday after the 2016 election, Dave Chappelle did a stand-up set at The Cutting Room in New York, in which he said he had voted for Hillary Clinton but didn't "feel good" about it. The content of the rest of his set is up for debate, as there is no recording. HuffPost reports Jared Kushner's newspaper, Observer, published an article framing Chappelle's set that night as being pro-Trump. But "according to Chappelle's team, the comedian took shots at both candidates."

After The Observer article made its rounds, Chappelle felt he needed to set the record straight. His representative released a statement saying, "Dave is disgusted by the tone of the election and especially by the idea that his comedy would be misconstrued to defend Trump."

Chappelle hosted Saturday Night Live the following week and did his best to take the high road, saying on air, "I'm wishing Donald Trump luck, and I'm going to give him a chance, and we the historically disenfranchised demand that he give us one too." Sadly, Trump never lived up to Chappelle's hopes. At a Robin Hood New York City benefit in May 2017, the comedian apologized for his previous comments (via The Hollywood Reporter), saying, "I was the first guy on TV to say 'Give Trump a chance.' I f*ked up. Sorry."

Bryan Cranston doesn't think Trump is sane

Breaking Bad actor Bryan Cranston didn't vote for Trump in 2016 and was outspoken about his opposition to Trump during the campaign. In October 2016, nine months into Trump's Presidency, Cranston was asked by The Hollywood Reporter about his opposition to Trump. He said, "If [Trump] fails, the country is in jeopardy. It would be egotistical for anyone to say, 'I hope he fails.' To that person I would say, f**k you. Why would you want that? So you can be right? I don't want him to fail. I want him to succeed. I do. I honestly do."

The actor held the supportive line behind Trump's presidency for a while, but, as time went on, he began to question the President's sanity. In April 2020, amid the frenzy surrounding Trump's comments about injecting disinfectant as a possible treatment for COVID-19 (via FOX News), Cranston tweeted, "I've stopped worrying about the president's sanity. He's not sane. And the realization of his illness doesn't fill me with anger, but with profound sadness. What I now worry about is the sanity of anyone who can still support this deeply troubled man to lead our country."

Aaron Carter ultimately decided not to vote for Trump

Musician Aaron Carter tweeted his support for Donald Trump's candidacy in February 2016, which sparked a contentious back and forth with his fans. The Hollywood Reporter detailed Carter's now-deleted jabs at fans who admonished him for supporting Trump.

The rapper told People in April 2016 that the fans harassing him for his support of Trump don't understand politics, saying, "I'm too intelligent for you guys." He admitted, though, that he didn't support all of Trump's policies like those on immigration and LGBTQ+ issues. It seems Carter was amid a change of heart when he spoke with People because, later that month, The Hollywood Reporter highlighted the musician's 180° turn on the issue. In a since-deleted tweet, he wrote, "I have decided I will not be voting for Donald Trump. I've seen a lot and to ME. it's just something I can't take part in. Too many reasons."

In October 2016, after the release of the infamous Access Hollywood tape in which Trump brags about grabbing women "by the p*ssy," the singer/songwriter reiterated his lack of support for Donald Trump's candidacy (via Billboard), by writing in another since-deleted tweet, "No. I'm not supporting Donald trump anymore."

Omarosa Manigault Newman recorded her White House firing

Omarosa Manigault Newman is nothing if not entertaining. From the moment she appeared on the first season of The Apprentice, lying and scheming her way through the challenges with her eyes firmly affixed on the prize, Manigault Newman was the villain we loved to hate. And she never really shook that label, even after another two seasons of The Apprentice, and stints as a Presidential campaign adviser and Director of Communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison.

When the party was over, Manigault Newman relied on her wily ways to land on her feet. She recorded her firing and subsequent phone conversation with Trump and came out swinging with promises of truths to be revealed in her subsequent tell-all. Trump tweeted in retaliation, "Wacky Omarosa, who got fired 3 times on the Apprentice, now got fired for the last time. She never made it, never will ... People in the White House hated her. She was vicious, but not smart. I would rarely see her but heard really bad things ... she only said GREAT things about me – until she got fired!"

Good Morning America's Robin Roberts gave Manigault Newman a sendoff befitting a villain, ending a segment about her firing with, "She says she has a story to tell, and I'm sure she'll be selling that story. Bye Felicia."