With all due respect to my Republican colleagues in the Senate who are doing this: can you please get a grip? Election officials across the country, including Republican Governors, have certified these results. This is embarrassing.”
–Sen. Amy Klobuchar
With all due respect? What due respect? This is what I call misplaced civility. The challenge congressional Republicans plan to mount against the presidential election results on January 6 is entirely bogus, based on the phony claim that the election result was distorted by voter fraud. Most of the senators and senators-elect who are joining in this attack on democracy are not mindless fanatics. (That characterization fits a great many House Republicans, but not so many senators.) They know that they are peddling a lie. They deserve nothing but contempt. Yes, the Senate has hallowed traditions of mutual respect and civility, but this is one occasion when tradition needs to be discarded. Don’t be embarrassed, Amy: be disgusted, and say so.
Among the Senate Republicans, the prize for sophistry goes to Josh Hawley, who explains that he feels compelled to take this course because so many of his constituents doubt the validity of the election results. Those doubts, of course, arise from the relentless lies of the President of the United States, lies in which Hawley and his colleagues have been complicit.
But for all his shamelessness Hawley must take a back seat to his colleague from Texas. Never one to be outdone, Sen. Ted Cruz once again asserts his status as the most loathsome member of the Senate with his own original justification for trashing democracy. There’s precedent for challenging presidential election results, says Cruz. We need only look to the election of 1876, when a commission was appointed and successfully resolved the contested returns from several states. Just what is needed in 2021. Wow! As Cruz certainly knows, that commission arrived at the most perniciously corrupt political deal of the 19th century. The Democrats, dominated by their Southern wing, agreed to hand the election to the Republicans in return for an end to Reconstruction, thus securing white supremacy in the South. Way to go, Ted!