Senate

Pence doesn’t provide evidence of voter fraud in meeting with GOP senators

Vice President Pence spent about five minutes briefing Republican senators Tuesday on President Trump’s legal battles in several swing states to change the results of vote counts in key states but didn’t provide any evidence or details of vote fraud or malfeasance.

Pence explained the broad thrust of Trump’s legal efforts in several states, such as Pennsylvania, Georgia, Wisconsin and Arizona, and told GOP senators that the goal is to ensure every legal vote is counted and illegal ballots are dismissed, according to lawmakers in the room.

Most of the meeting was devoted to the administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and plans to swiftly implement vaccinations after Pfizer announced Monday that it had developed a vaccine that was 90 percent effective.

“The states are all the ones you hear about, where there’s obviously the recount situations,” said Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.).

“He really didn’t give any deep insight into the actual legal challenges, the evidence specific, anything like that, which I think some people were sort of hoping [for],” he added.

Pence instead talked generally about the challenges being raised by Trump’s lawyers.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) said he didn’t hear any evidence from Pence to back up Trump’s claims that the election was stolen from him.

“I haven’t heard yet evidence of wrongdoing that would suggest a change in the outcome of the election but there are a number of lawsuits which will be pursued and the president has every right to carry out those lawsuits and insist on recounts,” Romney said.

Romney said Pence “described lawsuits state by state and what’s being alleged in those states.”

“I’ve not heard at this stage evidence of a vote count being off by virtue of some kind of conspiracy or inappropriate action but they’ll have time to present that,” Romney added.

While Republican senators didn’t hear any evidence of voter fraud from Pence, none of the lawmakers in the room challenged the vice president over Trump’s refusal to concede the race to Joe Biden, whom media groups have declared is the president-elect.

Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) said Pence’s message was “they want to make sure every legal vote is counted and every illegal vote is not counted.”

He said Pence spent about five minutes on the topic and that no one in the room pushed back.  

“I don’t know how anybody could disagree with what he said,” Cornyn added.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said the meeting was “mostly about the vaccine.”

He didn’t hear much about the substance of Trump’s legal strategy.

“I didn’t hear a detailed analysis of the legal argument,” he added. 

Tags 2020 election Donald Trump Joe Biden John Cornyn Kevin Cramer Marco Rubio Mike Pence Mitt Romney
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