"We have a lot of-- I have to be crass about it-- idiots who voted for him."


What: Former and current supporters of President Donald Trump clashed during a CNN focus group on Tuesday.


The panel of participants was split equally between loyal supporters and those who regret backing Trump in 2016. CNN host Alisyn Camerota moderated the discussion, which covered everything from Trump's immigration policy to his alleged affair with Stormy Daniels.


The conversation turned combative when one former supporter said that "a lot of idiots" voted for Trump, causing one pro-Trump man to take offense.


“I’m not an idiot! It was a wise decision that people voted for him," said Trump supporter Arthur Schaper. 


Why: Trump's approval rating within the Republican party is more than solid.

Since he took office, Trump's base has seldom wavered in their support for him. Many of Trump's supporters even ascribe the motivations behind controversies, or actions that seem counter to the interests of the base, as all part of the president's masterful ability to manipulate the media and turn seeming political defeats into victories. 


They call this talent "playing 4-D chess."


PLAY BY PLAY

Former Trump supporter Jeremy Montañez began the segment by admitting his opinion of Trump had changed: "I think he's a monster. I think he's a bigot. I think that he's doing a lot of things to ruin peoples' lives. I think that he's taken this country in the wrong direction," he said.


One panelist commented on the country's growing division: "This is the problem with what the president is doing. He's able to divide us on these issues where we're now fighting amongst ourselves," Christopher Gagin said.


Marsye Selit, a former Trump supporter, criticized those who voted for him: "We have a lot of — I have to be crass about it — idiots who voted for him, including myself at one time," she said.


Trump defender Arthur Schaper fired back at Selit: "I take great offense. I’m not an idiot! It was a wise decision that people voted for him… for hard-working Americans who are tired of seeing their jobs shipped overseas or taken by illegals!”


Montañez offered an apology for supporting Trump: “I want to apologize to the nation for my vote for him,” he said. “It was the wrong thing to do, it was the biggest mistake I ever made. He is a racist!”