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McMaster pushes back on RNC, calls events of Jan. 6 ‘illegitimate political discourse’

Former national security adviser H.R. McMaster in an interview on Sunday pushed back on the Republican National Committee (RNC), saying the events of Jan. 6 amounted to “illegitimate political discourse.”

“It was it was illegitimate political discourse because it was an assault on the first branch of government,” McMaster said during an appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

“And so I think it’s really important for us to come together now, Margaret,” McMaster told host Margaret Brennan. “And, you know, I really think it is possible to improve the transparency and the security of our elections, while ensuring that every eligible voter … gets to vote.” 

His remarks come after the RNC on Friday voted to censure the only two Republicans on the House panel investigating Jan. 6. The RNC resolution said that Reps. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) and Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) have been engaged in the “persecution of ordinary citizens engaged in legitimate political discourse.” The Republican lawmakers were also censured for their past criticism of former President Trump.

McMaster also said on Sunday that former Vice President Mike Pence was “absolutely” correct to push back on Trump’s claims that Pence could have overturned the results of the 2020 election. 

Speaking at an event on Friday, Pence said he had no right to overturn the 2020 election. 

“And I heard this week that President Trump said I had the right to overturn the election. President Trump is wrong. I had no right to overturn the election,” Pence said. “The presidency belongs to the American people, and the American people alone.” 

“All Americans should agree with Vice President Pence. And it was time, Margaret, I think to demand more from our political leaders, demand that they stop compromising confidence in our democratic principles and institutions and processes to score partisan, political points,” McMaster, who served in the Trump administration, told Brennan on Sunday. “And as you know, this happens across both political parties and it’s just time to stop.”

McMaster added that it is “pretty clear that we are emerging from a number of traumas of the past couple of years, and it’s time for Americans to come together and to restore our confidence in who we are as a people and in our democratic principles, institutions, and processes.”

–Updated at 1:13 p.m.

Tags Adam Kinzinger CBS Donald Trump Donald Trump H.R. McMaster Liz Cheney Mike Pence

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