Republican strategists and several conservative voters said his flip-flop suited them fine.
“I’m glad he changed his mind,” said Ann Sulliview, 68, speaking ahead of a Republican convention in Wayne County, where officials emphasized the need to keep both the Senate and the presidency in Republican control. But, she conceded, “he was going to catch flak for that either way he went.”
Patrick Gallagher, a Wayne County chiropractor, agreed. “We put him in office because he’s going to help the Republican Party,” he said. “The fact that he had a change of heart shows that he reflected back on why he’s there. He’s not there to thwart what we’re trying to accomplish.”
Potentially losing money for military projects, he acknowledged, “is not the best” for the state. But he said it was something he and other conservative voters could accept for Mr. Trump and his wall.
“I think we would give that up to do the greater good,” Dr. Gallagher said. “It’s not the best, but we’re forced to do that.”
Republican lawmakers who voted against the national emergency declaration found that sentiment prevalent when they returned to their districts. Senator Roy Blunt, Republican of Missouri, was disinvited from a Republican dinner after his vote against the emergency declaration, the Kansas City Star reported.
And at a town hall-style meeting in Spokane, Wash., on Monday, Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers told about 20 constituents that her vote for the resolution of disapproval — “a difficult vote for me,” she repeated — was a vote against a president trying to secure taxpayer funds without congressional approval, not against a border wall. Some applauded her resolve, but others were unconvinced of her support for Mr. Trump’s border security vision.
“I appreciate your vote, but I disagree,” said Kerry Schmidt, 62. “There’s a lot of people fighting against it. Where are the people fighting for it?”