Missouri newspaper hammers Hawley and Blunt: 'Embarrassment to the state'

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch blasted GOP Missouri Sens. Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntGOP working to lock down votes on McConnell debt deal Manchin quietly discusses Senate rules changes with Republicans House approves bill to ease passage of debt limit hike MORE and Josh HawleyJoshua (Josh) David HawleyProvision requiring women to register for draft stripped from defense bill Bob Dole: heroic, prickly and effective To counter China, the Senate must confirm US ambassadors MORE Thursday over their handling of former President TrumpDonald TrumpJury in Jussie Smollett trial begins deliberations Pence says he'll 'evaluate' any requests from Jan. 6 panel Biden's drug overdose strategy pushes treatment for some, prison for others MORE’s impeachment trial, calling it an “embarrassment to the state.”

In an editorial, the Post-Dispatch lambasted the two for voting against allowing the trial to take place and Hawley specifically for what it said was his evasion of responsibility for challenging the results of the presidential election in key states.

Hawley was one of the lawmakers who followed through on Trump's call to challenge the certification of the Electoral College vote in states that he lost to now-President BidenJoe BidenPharma lobby eyes parliamentarian Demand for US workers reaches historic high Biden to award Medal of Honor to three soldiers who fought in Iraq, Afghanistan: report MORE, even after a mob of angry Trump supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 in an effort to stop the count.

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Trump's second impeachment trial accuses him of inciting the violence.

"Blunt had the gall to tell reporters that, until a 13-minute video of the Capitol attack was shown to senators on Tuesday, he had never taken so much time to watch what occurred on that 'truly a horrendous day,' " the Thursday editorial says.

The newspaper also ridiculed Hawley for what it says are "form-letter responses" he has sent to constituents asking him about impeachment, saying it has “diverted our attention from critical issues such as the crisis of suicide, rising health care and housing costs, and the lack of internet access in rural areas.”

“It’s just a matter of time before Hawley starts asserting that when he fist-pumped the mob as it swarmed the Capitol on Jan. 6, he was actually fist-pumping his attention to suicide, housing costs and rural internet access,” the editorial states, referring to an image of Hawley making the gesture of solidarity to the assembled crowds as he entered the Capitol hours before the riot.

Hawley was the first senator to announce he would object to some states’ electoral results during the official count. Several more, including Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzInstagram chief gets bipartisan grilling over harm to teens McConnell faces GOP pushback on debt deal Democrats seek to avoid internal disputes over Russia and China MORE (R-Texas), announced they would join the objection shortly thereafter. A handful of senators who had originally said they would object reversed their decisions after the riots, including Sen. James LankfordJames Paul LankfordRubio blocks quick votes on stalemated defense bill Constant threats to government funding fail the American public GOP Senate candidate says Fauci is 'mass murderer,' should be jailed rather than 'hero' Rittenhouse MORE (R-Okla.) and then-Sen. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerGOP braces for brutal primary in Georgia governor's election Perdue to challenge Kemp in Georgia governor primary: report Senate GOP worries Trump could derail bid for majority MORE (R-Ga.).

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Many of Hawley’s home-state newspapers have been sharply critical of his behavior since the Capitol breach.

In another editorial earlier this month, the Post-Dispatch urged both Blunt and Hawley to vote to convict Trump. Neither is expected to.

“There is no way to credibly argue that Trump protected and defended the Constitution when video evidence shows him directing a mob to storm the Capitol and interrupt constitutionally mandated proceedings to certify the Electoral College result,” the editorial board said.