cloudy.png
Thursday October 21st, 2021 2:04PM

GOP plans to upend Biden win for Trump rips party apart

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The extraordinary effort to overturn the presidential election is ripping the Republican Party apart as GOP lawmakers orchestrating the challenges to Joe Biden's victory faced intense blowback Sunday from others in the party warning they are undermining Americans' faith in democracy.

President Donald Trump has enlisted support from a dozen Republican senators and up to 100 House Republicans to challenge the Electoral College vote when Congress convenes in a joint session to confirm President-elect Joe Biden’s 306-232 win.

With Biden set to be inaugurated Jan. 20, the outgoing president is intensifying efforts to prevent the traditional transfer of power. Trump can be heard in an audio recording pressuring Georgia's election officials to “find” enough votes to flip Biden's win to him. Allies are pressuring Vice President Mike Pence to ensure Trump's victory in presiding over the congressional session. Trump is whipping up crowds for a rally in Washington.

But without evidence of voter fraud or other problems, leading Republicans across the nation are joining Democrats in saying there is no reason for the federal government to intervene in what state officials have certified were free and fair elections. Attorney General William Barr, who was appointed by Trump, said before leaving office that there was no evidence of fraud that would change the election outcome.

“The 2020 election is over,” said a statement Sunday from a bipartisan group of 10 senators, including Republicans Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana and Mitt Romney of Utah.

“At this point, further attempts to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the 2020 Presidential election are contrary to the clearly expressed will of the American people and only serve to undermine Americans’ confidence in the already determined election results,” the senators wrote.

Republican Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland said, “The scheme by members of Congress to reject the certification of the presidential election makes a mockery of our system and who we are as Americans.”

The unusual challenge to the presidential election, on a scale unseen since the aftermath of the Civil War, clouded the opening of the new Congress and is set to consume its first days. The House and Senate will meet Wednesday in a joint session to accept the Electoral College vote, a typically routine process that's now expected to be a prolonged fight.

Biden’s transition spokesman, Mike Gwin, dismissed the effort as a “stunt” that won’t change the fact that Biden will be sworn in Jan. 20.

The effort being led by Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, was hit with swift criticism.

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said Sunday his colleagues will have an opportunity to make their case, but they must produce evidence and facts. “They have a high bar to clear," he said.

Others simply said they do not plan to join the effort. “I don’t think either of the two efforts has any chance for success,” said Missouri's other senator, Republican Roy Blunt.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to colleagues that while there is “no doubt as to the outcome of the Biden-Harris presidency, our further success is to convince more of the American people to trust in our democratic system.”

Hawley defended his actions in a lengthy email to colleagues, explaining that his Missouri constituents have been “loud and clear” with their belief that Biden's defeat of Trump was unfair.

“It is my responsibility as a senator to raise their concerns,” Hawley wrote late Saturday.

Hawley plans to object to the state tally from Pennsylvania. But that state's Republican senator, Pat Toomey, criticized the attack on Pennsylvania's election system and said the results that named Biden the winner are valid.

Cruz's coalition of 11 Republican senators vows to reject the Electoral College tallies unless Congress launches a commission to immediately conduct an audit of the election results. They are zeroing in on the states where Trump has raised unfounded claims of voter fraud. Congress is unlikely to agree to their demand.

The group formed with Cruz, which presented no new evidence of election problems, includes Sens. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, James Lankford of Oklahoma, Steve Daines of Montana, John Kennedy of Louisiana, Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Mike Braun of Indiana. Also part of the effort are some of the new senators: Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming, Roger Marshall of Kansas, Bill Hagerty of Tennessee and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama.

The convening of the joint session to count the Electoral College votes has faced objections before. In 2017, several House Democrats challenged Trump’s win but Biden, who presided at the time as the vice president, swiftly dismissed them to assert Trump's victory. Rarely have the protests approached this level of intensity.

The moment is a defining one for the Republican Party in a post-Trump era. Both Hawley and Cruz are potential 2024 presidential contenders, cementing their alignment with Trump’s base of supporters. Others are trying to forge a different path for the GOP.

Pence will be carefully watched as he presides over what is expected to be a prolonged showdown, depending on how many challenges are mounted.

The vice president “welcomes the efforts of members of the House and Senate to use the authority they have under the law to raise objections,” Pence's chief of staff, Marc Short, said in a statement Saturday.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has warned Republicans off such challenges but said little when asked about it as at the Capitol as the Senate opened Sunday.

“We’ll be dealing with all of that on Wednesday,” he said.

Congress have been loathe to interfere in the state-run election systems, a longstanding protocol. States choose their own election officials and draft their election laws. During the coronavirus pandemic many states adapted by allowing mail voting to ease health risks of voting in person. Those changes and others are now being challenged by Trump and his allies.

Trump, the first president to lose a reelection bid in almost 30 years, has attributed his defeat to widespread voter fraud, despite the consensus of nonpartisan election officials and even Trump's attorney general that there was none. Of the roughly 50 lawsuits the president and his allies have filed challenging election results, nearly all have been dismissed or dropped. He’s also lost twice at the U.S. Supreme Court.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the latest challenge from Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, and a group of Arizona electors, who filed suit to try to force Pence to step outside mere ceremony and shape the outcome of the vote. The appellate court sided with the federal judge, a Trump appointee, who dismissed the suit.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Online Supreme Court News, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
GOP plans to upend Biden win for Trump rips party apart
Republicans orchestrating President Donald Trump’s extraordinary effort to overturn the presidential election are facing intense blowback
4:23PM ( 26 minutes ago )
Trump, on tape, presses Ga. official to 'find' Trump votes
President Donald Trump is heard on tape pleading with Georgia’s election chief to overturn Joe Biden's win in the state, suggesting in a telephone call that the official “find” enough votes to hand Trump the victory
4:22PM ( 27 minutes ago )
The Latest: Former Speaker Ryan condemns election protest
Former House Speaker Paul Ryan says in a statement that Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential victory is “entirely legitimate.”
4:17PM ( 32 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
The Latest: Group of senators urges Biden's win be certified
A bipartisan group of 10 senators has issued a statement calling for Congress to certify President-elect Joe Biden’s win
2:01PM ( 2 hours ago )
The Latest: Graham criticizes Cruz's bid to dispute election
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham is calling the effort by Sen. Ted Cruz and other Republican senators to overturn the presidential election a “dodge” that doesn’t go far enough in helping President Donald Trump
1:06PM ( 3 hours ago )
Congress opens new session as virus, Biden's win dominate
Congress has convened for a new session with lawmakers sworn into office during a tumultuous period
12:54PM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
More GOP lawmakers enlist in Trump effort to undo Biden win
A growing number of Republican lawmakers have joined President Donald Trump’s extraordinary effort to overturn the election, pledging to reject the results when Congress meets next week to count the Electoral College votes and certify President-elect Joe Biden’s win
9:59PM ( 18 hours ago )
The Latest: Ariz. gov. rejects call for online learning
Arizona’s Gov. Doug Ducey has rejected the state’s top education official’s call for Ducey to order public schools to use only online instruction for the next two weeks unless they have waivers from health officials
6:57PM ( 21 hours ago )
The Latest: New daily cases hit record in North Carolina
North Carolina has reported its highest daily number of COVID-19 cases yet
4:37PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Congress News
Texas judge dismisses suit aimed at overturning election
A federal judge has dismissed a last-gasp lawsuit led by a House Republican that seeks to give Vice President Mike Pence the power to overturn the results of the presidential election won by Joe Biden when Congress formally counts the Electoral College votes next week
9:09PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Supreme Court News
2021 marquee contest: Virginia governor's race in high gear
An unusually broad field is vying to be the next governor of Virginia as the marquee political contest of 2021 gets into full swing
9:09AM ( 1 day ago )
EXPLAINER: Stakes high for U.S. Senate runoffs in Georgia
Voters in Georgia still have unfinished business to resolve two months after the November elections
1:05AM ( 1 day ago )
GOP torn over Trump's Electoral College challenge of Biden
President Donald Trump’s extraordinary election challenge over his defeat by President-elect Joe Biden is splitting the Republican Party
12:10AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections
Shutdown, impeachment, virus: Chaotic Congress winds down
Congress is ending a chaotic session with a rare rebuff by Republicans of President Donald Trump
12:25AM ( 2 days ago )
GOP senator rebukes 'dangerous ploy' to fight Biden victory
Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska has issued a pointed rebuke of GOP attempts to object Jan. 6 to the Electoral College tally of the presidential election
12:21AM ( 2 days ago )
General Election News
General Presidential Election News
Trump, on tape, presses Ga. official to 'find' Trump votes
President Donald Trump is heard on tape pleading with Georgia’s election chief to overturn Joe Biden's win in the state, suggesting in a telephone call that the official “find” enough votes to hand Trump the victory
4:22PM ( 27 minutes ago )
The Latest: Former Speaker Ryan condemns election protest
Former House Speaker Paul Ryan says in a statement that Democrat Joe Biden’s presidential victory is “entirely legitimate.”
4:17PM ( 32 minutes ago )
Ravens clinch playoff spot with 38-3 rout of Bengals
Lamar Jackson threw three touchdown passes and the Baltimore Ravens clinched a playoff spot with a 38-3 rout of the Cincinnati Bengals
4:16PM ( 34 minutes ago )
Businessman and family die when plane hits Michigan house
A small plane crashed into a house in southeastern Michigan, killing the pilot and two family members
4:06PM ( 43 minutes ago )
Pelosi on track to be speaker again, faces difficult 2021
Speaker Nancy Pelosi seems on track to renew her hold on the House’s top job
3:59PM ( 51 minutes ago )