GOP U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio challenged by Democrats to repudiate stolen election claims

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Champaign County Republican Rep. Jim Jordan on Tuesday clashed with Democrats on the House Rules Committee over GOP claims that the 2020 presidential election was “stolen.”

The confrontation occurred as Jordan argued against bringing a measure to the House floor that would urge Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the Constitution’s 25th Amendment to assume the presidency on the grounds that President Donald Trump is unfit to serve

Horrified that a mob of Trump supporters marched on the Capitol last week and rioted as Congress attempted to tally electoral votes that showed Democrat Joe Biden won the election, Democrats who control the House are bringing a measure to the floor that would urge Pence to displace Trump. Five people, including a Capitol Police officer, died as a result of the melee. If Pence doesn’t act, Democrats will bring up a measure to impeach Trump.

The rules committee’s Democratic chairman, Rep. Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, repeatedly asked Jordan to “admit that Joe Biden won fair and square and the election was not rigged or stolen.” Jordan argued against bringing up what he called “a Democrat resolution to attack the president just eight days before he has said he will leave office, just eight days before we will have a peaceful transition of power as we have had in this country every four or eight years since our nation’s founding.

McGovern said Trump hasn’t been able “to accept reality” after losing the election, saying that for the last several months, Jordan and others “have given oxygen to the president’s conspiracy theory” that the election results were tainted by widespread fraud.

“He incited that mob, and unfortunately, some of our colleagues joined in that effort to gin things up,” said McGovern. “We all want healing, but in order to get to healing we need truth, and we need accountability. I mean, people came to the Capitol building to try to launch a coup to stop us from upholding our constitutional responsibilities.”

Jordan, who attended “Stop the Steal” rallies in Pennsylvania and led efforts on the House floor to fight acceptance of ballots in states where Trump filed unsuccessful lawsuits to contest the results, argued he had merely followed “the process that the Constitution prescribes.”

“The late Justice Ginsburg said January 6 is the date of ultimate significance,” said Jordan. “That is how Congress set this up in–in the statute, they passed dealing with the 12th Amendment, so we followed that process, and at 4 a.m. on Thursday, January 7, when we concluded our business on the floor, Joe Biden became–Vice President Biden became President-elect Biden. That is how the process plays out. Those of us who spoke against the unconstitutional way several states conducted their election, we are following the process and we did nothing different than Democrats have done every time a Republican has been elected this century.

McGovern said he was used to Trump’s “over the top statements” and “pandering to some of the most intolerant groups in this country, but I never thought, I never thought I would see what he–what he said at that rally.

“My question was very simple. I mean, I am asking you to make a statement that the election was not stolen, that Joe Biden won fair and square, and you know one of the ways to promote healing is for you to say yes and to put that in your Twitter account so that all these people who bought into a lie will start hearing from some of the people that were pushing this,” McGovern continued.

“In several states the rules were changed in an unconstitutional fashion,” Jordan said. “You had governors, you had supreme courts. In some cases, you had county clerks changing the election laws. That’s what we are pointing out …Of course I understand Joe Biden won, but are you saying there’s no concerns with this election?”https://693f522be221b47c80f4fc4e2d17780c.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html

“Well, I don’t want to belabor this point, but I will be honest with you, I am stunned that after all that has happened that we can’t get a definitive answer,” McGovern said. “People came here, Mr. Jordan, because they believed a lie that the president and many people in this chamber perpetrated, that this election was not run in a fair and square fashion. And the president to this day continues to perpetrate the–the lie that somehow he won this election by a landslide.

When Jordan noted that McGovern and other Democrats had raised questions about results of previous presidential elections, Maryland Democratic Rep. Jamie Raskin called it “a terrible false moral equivalency.” Raskin said he and other Democrats had pointed out past technical or procedural problems in the electoral college, but did not “ever incite mob insurrection against the government of the United States.”

“There were millions of people, to take up the chairman’s point, who were convinced that Vladimir Putin with his cyber sabotage against the DNC and Hillary Clinton and so on had profoundly influenced the outcome of the 2016 election,” said Raskin. “But what did the Democrats do? They put on, you know, pink winter hats, marched peacefully with a million people, joined Planned Parenthood, worked with their churches to try to inform America. Nobody was out there agitating for violent armed insurrection against the government of the United States

“I acknowledged that Donald Trump was the president-elect the day after the election, McGovern added. “I didn’t like it, but I acknowledged it. The trouble here is my friends have been spending the last few months saying that the election was stolen. In fact, the gentleman from Ohio even went to a rally called Stop the Steal. So we have a president now that continues to put out this big lie that he won the election by a landslide. So there’s a big difference here.”

At one point in the discussion, Jordan told Colorado Democratic Rep. Ed Perlmutter: “I’ve never said that this election was stolen,” a claim that McGovern disputed by producing an article that chronicled his appearance at the Pennsylvania “Stop the Steal” rally.

“Yeah, two days after the election,” said Jordan. “Two days after the election.”

Jordan and other Republicans argued against passing the resolution urging Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, noting that Pence has already said he won’t do it.

“Republicans have been consistent,” said Jordan.” We condemned the violence last summer. We condemned the violence last week. Congress needs to stop this, this effort to remove the president from office just one week before he is set to leave, continued calls to impeach the president or remove him from office with using the 25 Amendment I don’t think are healthy for our nation. Rushing this resolution to the floor will do nothing to unify or heal the country.

Read more:

Sen. Rob Portman urges President Trump to address the nation to explicitly urge that his supporters refrain from violence, or ‘bear responsibility’

Ohio’s Sherrod Brown plans to take on corporations as chair of Senate Banking Committee

U.S. Capitol Police officers are being disciplined for cooperating with rioters, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan says

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