Gov. Haslam Calls For Unity After Trump Wins Election

Posted at 7:04 PM, Nov 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-09 20:06:19-05

After publicly refusing to support Donald Trump as a presidential candidate, Governor Bill Haslam is calling for unity under the president elect.

"I think the message is, even for people who are passionate about this, is lets stop yelling at each other," Gov. Haslam said. "We literally have a divided country and we've seen what that accomplishes, which is nothing."

Earlier in the election Haslam was vocal about his refusal to vote for Trump, though he has not revealed who he voted for instead.

Wednesday, the governor called Trump's tone during his victory speech encouraging and open, something he hopes will continue once Trump takes over the White House.

"If you listen to President Elect Trump's tone last night it was very different," Haslam said. "Regardless of where you are on the political spectrum, you'd have to say it was very gracious and very open."

Some Tennessee lawmakers hinted at blow back for Haslam because of his failure to support the GOP candidate early on.

"I hope those elected officials that disavowed Trump so adamantly don't need help within the next two years," tweeted State Senator Paul Bailey.

Bailey later clarified his message.

"I think we need to rally around that nominee," Bailey said. "I think those who chose not to wasn't very wise, especially give the results of last night. I think today there's a lot of fences being mended and certainly those people need to be reaching out to the President Elect and extending and olive branch and be willing to work with him over the next four years."

A message of unity Haslam echoed.

"I hope we'll say a whole lot of people think differently than I do," Haslam said. "Let's realize that and use that approach as we figure out how to govern this very diverse country that we live in."