WASHINGTON D.C., Jan. 3, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — U.S. Senator Mitt Romney has joined a bipartisan group of senators saying the U.S. election is over.
The statement, issued Sunday afternoon — just three days before Congress is scheduled to certify the Electoral College vote — reads: “The 2020 election is over. All challenges through recounts and appeals have been exhausted. 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 voters have spoken, and Congress must now fulfill its responsibility to certify the election results. In two weeks, we will begin working with our colleagues and the new administration on bipartisan, common sense solutions to the enormous challenges facing our country. It is time to move forward.”
Romney (R-UT) joined the following senators in issuing the statement: Joe Manchin (D-WV), Susan Collins (R-ME), Mark Warner (D-VA), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Angus King (I-ME), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), and Dick Durbin (D-IL).
On Saturday night, Romney broadsided fellow senator Ted Cruz and other Republicans in Congress, characterizing their attempt to overturn the 2020 election as an “egregious political ploy” designed to advance their political careers, regardless of the impact on the American electorate.
Romney’s rebuke of his fellow Republicans came just hours after Cruz called for the immediate creation of a special commission to audit the election over 10 days prior to President-elect Joe Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration.
“Once completed, individual states would evaluate the Commission’s findings and could convene a special legislative session to certify a change in their vote, if needed,” Cruz wrote.
Romney responded by taking direct aim at Cruz, and his GOP cohorts, calling their effort an “ill-conceived endeavor.”
Romney also spoke to Trump’s calls for supporters to come to the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday, saying the outcome had the “predictable potential to lead to disruption, and worse.”
Romney’s full statement is as follows:
“The egregious ploy to reject electors may enhance the political ambition of some, but dangerously threatens our Democratic Republic. The congressional power to reject electors is reserved for the most extreme and unusual circumstances. These are far from it. More Americans participated in this election than ever before, and they made their choice. President Trump’s lawyers made their case before scores of courts; in every instance, they failed. The Justice Department found no evidence of irregularity sufficient to overturn the election. The Presidential Voter Fraud Commission disbanded without finding such evidence.
“My fellow Senator Ted Cruz and the co-signers of his statement argue that rejection of electors or an election audit directed by Congress would restore trust in the election. Nonsense. This argument ignores the widely perceived reality that Congress is an overwhelmingly partisan body; the American people wisely place greater trust in the federal courts where judges serve for life. Members of Congress who would substitute their own partisan judgement for that of the courts do not enhance public trust, they imperil it.
“Were Congress to actually reject state electors, partisans would inevitably demand the same any time their candidate had lost. Congress, not voters in the respective states, would choose our presidents.
“Adding to this ill-conceived endeavor by some in Congress is the President’s call for his supporters to come to the Capitol on the day when this matter is to be debated and decided. This has the predictable potential to lead to disruption, and worse.
I could never have imagined seeing these things in the greatest democracy in the world. Has ambition so eclipsed principle?”