GOP downplays Trump’s refusal to decide to peaceable transition of energy: ‘The President says loopy stuff’

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“The President says loopy stuff. We have all the time had a peaceable transition of energy. It isn’t going to alter,” mentioned Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who has been an occasional critic of the President.

Whereas Republicans insisted there could be a peaceable transition, many didn’t go as far as to explicitly criticize his remarks after Trump on Wednesday wouldn’t decide to offering a peaceable transition of energy after Election Day, lending additional gasoline to issues he could not relinquish his workplace ought to he lose in November.

Trump’s feedback amounted to a well-recognized sample on Capitol Hill: Stoking an argument, and placing Republicans in a jam. However this time, he stoked fears a few primary tenant of democracy, forcing Republicans to weigh in and demand the election outcomes might be adhered to — even when many did not need take him on by title.

Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell not often weighs in on controversial Trump feedback, however did so on Thursday, though he did not single out the President.

“The winner of the November third election might be inaugurated on January 20th. There might be an orderly transition simply as there was each 4 years since 1792,” McConnell, who’s working for reelection this cycle in Kentucky, tweeted Thursday morning.

Mitt Romney of Utah, the lone Senate Republican to interrupt ranks and vote to convict through the President’s impeachment trial, nevertheless, went the furthest and was sharply vital of the President’s message, although he didn’t check with him by title in his response.

“Elementary to democracy is the peaceable transition of energy; with out that, there’s Belarus. Any suggestion {that a} president may not respect this Constitutional assure is each unthinkable and unacceptable,” Romney tweeted Wednesday night, referencing the disputed presidential elections in Belarus.

Sen. John Cornyn, a member of the Senate GOP management staff, instructed CNN it was not acceptable for Trump to refuse to decide to a peaceable transition of energy. “No,” Cornyn mentioned when requested if it was acceptable. Requested if the GOP would do one thing about it if he will not depart workplace if he loses, Cornyn mentioned: “I am not going to reply a hypothetical.”

Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham, in a troublesome reelection race in South Carolina, mentioned: “It should occur,” referring to an orderly transition. “I am not nervous about that. It is the least of my issues.”

Graham mentioned: “If there is a courtroom problem to the election, it is going to be determined in courtroom. And the loser of the problem will settle for the outcomes.”

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When requested about issues they’re pushing a Supreme Court docket nominee now to assist tilt the end result of any election outcomes, Graham mentioned: “We want a full courtroom.”

“There might be a peaceable transition of energy, it might take the courtroom course of to run its course, however there might be a peaceable transition of energy,” mentioned Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri.

Sen. Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican and the previous Intelligence Committee chairman, dismissed the query put to Trump as an effort “to get him to say there’s an opportunity I would lose. Why would any candidate say that?”

“I feel that anyone that feels that there is a fault within the election would check it,” Burr mentioned, pointing to Bush v. Gore. “However on the finish of the day, we have now protocols for this.”

Different Republicans had been fast to deflect, pointing to Hillary Clinton’s remarks suggesting that Joe Biden “shouldn’t concede below any circumstances.”

Plenty of different Republicans didn’t sound alarmed on the President’s remarks, whereas nonetheless arguing that the risk raised by them won’t come to fruition.

North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis, one of the crucial weak Republicans up for reelection this cycle, mentioned: “Look, there’s going to be an orderly transition of energy however should you’ve received spare time in the present day go ask to each Democrat member and ask them in the event that they stand with Hillary Clinton who says that Biden should not settle for the outcome below any circumstances if he does not win.”

Pressed on whether or not Trump ought to settle for the outcomes and decide to a peaceable transition, Tillis mentioned: “Get again with me when you could have spoken with the Democratic members on any person who first mentioned do not settle for the results of the election.”

Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Republican from Iowa, equally centered on Clinton and Biden, saying “Is your query any completely different than what Hillary Clinton instructed Biden: ‘do not concede the election.’ No, it’s extremely clear whether or not Biden wins … this presidency ends on January the 20th below the Structure.”

On the finish of August, Clinton mentioned that if the election is shut Biden shouldn’t concede saying: “Joe Biden shouldn’t concede below any circumstances as a result of I feel that is going to pull out, and ultimately I do consider he’ll win if we do not give an inch and if we’re as centered and relentless as the opposite aspect is.”

Trump has beforehand refused to say whether or not he would settle for the election outcomes, echoing his sentiments from 2016. And he has joked — he says — about staying in workplace effectively previous the constitutionally sure two phrases. However his refusal to ensure a violence-free transition went additional and is prone to alarm his opponents, already on edge given his deployment of federal regulation enforcement to quell protests in American cities.

Home GOP convention Chairwoman Liz Cheney, the No. three Home Republican, tweeted in response, “The peaceable switch of energy is enshrined in our Structure and elementary to the survival of our Republic. America’s leaders swear an oath to the Structure. We are going to uphold that oath.”

Appearing Senate Intelligence Chairman Marco Rubio, a Republican from Florida, tweeted, “As we have now performed for over two centuries we may have a reputable & honest election It might take longer than traditional to know the end result, however it is going to be a legitimate one And at midday on Jan 20,2021 we are going to peacefully swear within the President.”

CNN’s Lauren Fox, Ted Barrett, Kevin Liptak and Nicky Roberston contributed to this report.

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