GOP Leader McConnell Congratulates Biden As President-ElectHistorians in the News
tags: Republican Party, Julian Zelizer, Joe Biden, 2020 Election
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell congratulated Democrat Joe Biden as president-elect on Tuesday, saying the Electoral College “has spoken.”
The Republican leader’s statement, delivered in a speech on the Senate floor, ends weeks of silence over President Donald Trump’s defeat. It came a day after electors met and officially affirmed Biden’s election win.
Historians and election officials have warned that Trump’s unfounded claims of voter fraud threaten to erode Americans’ faith in the election system, and that lawmakers have a responsibility under the oath of office to defend the Constitution.
“The campaign to overturn the outcome is a dangerous thing,” said Julian Zelizer, a professor of history and public policy at Princeton.
“This is a Republican operation, not a presidential operation,” Zelizer said. “Without their silence, he couldn’t do what he is doing.”
Trump is trying to throw out the ballots of thousands of Americans, particularly those who voted by mail, in dozens of lawsuits that have mostly failed. His legal team is claiming irregularities, even though Attorney General William Barr, who abruptly resigned Monday, has said there is no evidence of widespread fraud that would alter the election results. State election officials, including Republicans, have said the election was fair and valid.
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