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Your Opinion: Hawley's Attempted Coup

January 24, 2021 at 6:05 a.m. | Updated January 24, 2021 at 3:48 p.m.

Bill Gerling

Jefferson City

Dear Editor:

Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, 139 Republican representatives and eight Republican senators voted to object to the approval of the count of lawfully certified presidential votes. This group included several Representatives from Missouri, including Blaine Luetkemeyer.

The original objection of Hawley was to challenge Pennsylvania law regarding the counting of mail-in ballots. This had already been litigated in Pennsylvania and referred to the U.S. Supreme Court, which refused to take the case, thus upholding decisions of the Pennsylvania courts. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled the post-election challenge came too late. Permitting the challenge would disenfranchise millions of voters. Judge Bibas, a Trump appointee, stated never in American history had any court retroactively disenfranchised a state's electorate for any reason.

Hawley and Cruz's constitutional law professor stated that "Sens. Hawley and Cruz made virtually no constitutional or statutory arguments that had not been rejected by Republican and Democratic judges. Their press releases and speeches lent phony legitimacy to the president's incendiary claims that resulted in bombs near Capitol Hill and a historic insurrection that may be connected with five deaths."

Both Hawley and Cruz are lawyers and graduates of Yale and Harvard. They knew their legal concerns were bogus. Both have 2024 presidential aspirations. Both would like to inherit Trump's populist base. That is probably the reason why Hawley pumped his fist in solidarity with the insurrectionists who were attending Trump's rally before they invaded the Capitol. Hawley has used his bogus objections for a fundraising campaign. As the result of this attempted coup, he has lost a book contract, financial contributors and was condemned by John Danforth, who said it was the "biggest mistake I've ever made in my life" to back Hawley.

Hawley said many of his constituents have concerns about election integrity. If this is true, as a legislator and leader, he should be able to explain this election has been examined more closely than any in the history of our country. By the time that Hawley and Cruz raised their objections, Trump's lawyers had filed and lost over 50 cases in the 2020 election. Trump and his lawyers had harassed Republican and Democratic officials, voting machine executives, Attorney General Barr and federal election officials. Trump tried to coerce Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger to "recalculate the vote" after it had been recounted three times. He was threatened but didn't back down.

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