Ignoring all evidence to the contrary, U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt told reporters today that Donald Trump "may not have been defeated" in the presidential election.
That may seem odd, considering vote totals show Trump did in fact lose, but a number of Republicans have followed the lame-duck president's lead in suggesting mass voter fraud tipped the election.
"The president wasn't defeated by huge numbers," Blunt told reporters. "In fact, he may not have been defeated at all."
Sen. Roy Blunt: "The President wasn't defeated by huge numbers -- in fact, he may not have been defeated at all." pic.twitter.com/dNpaKyvQhA— The Hill (@thehill) November 10, 2020
A reminder here that former Vice President Joe Biden defeated Trump in the presidential election.
During the past few days, Blunt has admitted that Trump's calls to stop counting in some states and continue counting in others was "not how the system works" and that any review of the votes was "unlikely" to change the outcome. But with today's comments he seemed to veer back toward the line of Trump's right-wing allies, who've pushed the narrative that the results of the election can't be trusted, feeding into the conspiracy theories of the outgoing presidents' most deranged supporters.
Missouri's junior senator Josh Hawley has already introduced legislation to support the wholly unsupported idea Biden's election victory is in question.
"The debacle of the 2020 election has made clear that serious reforms are needed to protect the integrity of our elections," Hawley said in a press release.
Election experts agree that there is no reason for Americans to doubt the results of their elections. Blunt, seemingly unconcerned about votes cast for Republicans, bragged about seats won by Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives and, seconds after saying Trump may have won, proclaimed that the party would maintain a majority in the Senate — a conclusion that is actually in question.
But Missouri Republicans have been eager to make it seem as though the country may be dealing with mass fraud. State Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced in a press release that he has "led" other Republican attorneys general in joining the Republican party's fight to throw out ballots in Pennsylvania.
Among its flurry of lawsuits, a number of which were immediately swatted down, the Trump campaign has sued the secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in hopes of invalidating tens of thousands of votes for Biden. (Biden's lead over Trump in the state is more than 47,000.)
Missouri's attorney general and the group of other attorneys general who are also not from Pennsylvania filed an amicus brief in the suit — a maneuver that lets people who aren't part of a lawsuit weigh in. They argue that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court was wrong in allowing votes that arrived in the mail within three days of Election Day to be counted. In the brief, Missouri's attorney general says Pennsylvania shouldn't count those votes because the court's ruling would accept envelopes that arrived with missing or ineligible postmarks.
If the U.S. Post Office smudged a postmark on a Pennsylvania voter's ballot envelope, the Missouri attorney general argues that the Pennsylvania voter's ballot should be thrown out.
Schmitt and nine other non-Pennsylvania attorneys general argue the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's ruling creates the possibility of fraud.
"The decision provided a window of time after Election Day, when the preliminary results were announced, in which unscrupulous actors could attempt to influence a close Presidential election in Pennsylvania and elsewhere," the attorneys general.
After raising the specter of election-confidence-undermining "unscrupulous actors," who have not yet materialized, Schmitt and the other attorneys general say they're concerned the public's confidence in elections has been undermined and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court should reconsider.
They do not concede that Biden won the election and Trump lost.
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