More than 70 former Republican national security officials, including ex-CIA and FBI chiefs, have endorsed Joe Biden during the ongoing Democratic National Convention this week, throwing their support behind the Democratic presidential candidate.

In a statement released on Thursday, Aug. 20, the group of officials said that they served during the administrations of Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, and/or Donald Trump, or as members of Congress.

Among them are some strong figures such as Gen. Michael Hayden—former director of the CIA and the NSA; William Webster—former director of the CIA and FBI; John Negroponte—former director of National Intelligence and former deputy secretary of State; Michael Leiter—former director of the National Counterterrorism Center; and Mike Donley—former secretary of the Air Force.

In their statement, the officials expressed concerns about the course of the United States under the leadership of President Donald Trump who they claimed “lacks the character and competence to lead this nation and has engaged in corrupt behavior that renders him unfit to serve as President.”

The group pointed out a number of reasons to conclude, “Donald Trump has failed our country and that Vice President Joe Biden should be elected the next President of the United States.”

Those officials claimed that President Trump has damaged America’s role as a world leader, solicited foreign influence and undermined confidence in presidential elections, aligned himself with dictators, and failed to stand up for American values. 

They also said that President Trump has disparaged the armed forces, intelligence agencies and diplomats; undermined the rule of law; dishonored the office of the presidency; and divided the nation.

The group said that President Trump “has disappointed millions of voters who put their faith in him and has demonstrated that he is dangerously unfit to serve another term.”

“In contrast, we believe Joe Biden has the character, experience, and temperament to lead this nation,” the former security officials wrote. “We believe he will restore the dignity of the presidency, bring Americans together, reassert America’s role as a global leader, and inspire our nation to live up to its ideals.”

The group also called for other Republican national security officials to join them in supporting Biden.

Their statement came three days before the Republican National Convention opens on Monday, Aug. 24.

Beside this group of national security officials, there are some other Republican-led groups campaigning for Biden, such as Republican Voters Against Trump and 43 Alumni for Biden. The Trump campaign has described these groups as “the swamp,” accusing them of trying to take down the duly elected president.

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