Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah on Tuesday urged President Donald Trump to accept a clear loss to President-elect Joe Biden and called on Republicans to chart a course based on conservative principles as opposed to Trumpism.
Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and 2012 GOP presidential nominee, told CBS News’ “This Morning” that it was “very unfortunate” Biden would take office in a “difficult position … as a result of President Trump’s efforts to try to overturn the will of the people.”
“We’ve had every court say President Trump doesn’t have a case. The Electoral College has voted,” Romney said. “It’s very clear that President-elect Biden will become our next president, and it’s time to move on.”
Sen. Mitt Romney: “Some of those that are really identified as being strong Trump supporters, they’d make a real difference if they came out and spoke and said, ‘You know what, we got to get behind this new President-elect. He was legitimately elected. Let's move on’” pic.twitter.com/Fa7WFgopL7
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) December 15, 2020
Pressed on whether Trump or his GOP allies in Congress have hurt the nation, Romney said it’s “totally appropriate for people to exercise their legal rights,” but he made the case that those battles were over.
“I never saw any evidence of any kind of substantial voter fraud that would suggest there was any reason to overturn the election,” Romney added. “The court filings in over 50 courts — there was no evidence. A lot of rhetoric, but no evidence. If one pushes long and hard, once you’ve lost, move on. I lost in 2012. I didn’t like losing. But you have to acknowledge it and move on.”
GOPUSA Editor’s Note: Please keep in mind that this is a mainstream media story with the typical lean to the left. We publish the story for the purpose of informing our readers.
Romney’s comments came after electors on Monday voted in every state, with Biden racking up 306 Electoral College votes, as projected, compared to Trump’s 232. In addition to winning the popular vote by nearly 7 million votes, Biden flipped key battleground states including Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan and Georgia to send him and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris to the White House.
That hasn’t stopped Trump from his relentless refusal to concede, nor inspired him to stop tweeting accusations of fraud without providing any hard evidence.
GOPUSA Editor’s Note: The media claim of no evidence of voter fraud is disputed.
In tweets after the electors sealed Biden’s victory, Trump shared a report on allegedly crooked voting systems that was quickly discredited by state officials in Michigan. The report was prepared by Russell Ramsland of Allied Security Operations Group, who previously confused Michigan and Minnesota voting districts and who “ascribes motives of fraud and obfuscation to processes that are easily explained as routine election procedures or error corrections,” Michigan Elections Director Jonathan Brater said in a court filing, the Detroit Free Press reported.
State and local election officials of both parties assert that bipartisan teams of poll workers across the country followed the law and counted votes legally without major hiccups on Nov. 3 and thereafter.
Since Election Day, dozens of courts — including with judges appointed by Trump and other Republicans — have repeatedly dismissed or refused to hear lawsuits from the Trump campaign and Republican challengers alleging fraud or irregularities.
The Trump administration’s own security officials say the Nov. 3 election was the “most secure in American history” and that no voting system was compromised. Trump fired his own appointee, Christopher Krebs, the top Department of Homeland Security election security official, not long after Election Day.
More than 100 Republican House members backed a Texas lawsuit rejected by the Supreme Court, but a few GOP senators described the suit and other efforts to overturn the election as pure publicity stunts.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday morning congratulated Biden and recognized the former vice president and Delaware senator as president-elect for the first time.
Romney, one of the first Republicans to congratulate Biden, painted the transition to a new administration as a time of reckoning for his party. While the senator didn’t invoke Trump’s name as he discussed the future of the GOP, he contrasted traditional American conservative principles with Trump’s style and policies.
“I think the party is uncertain of the course that we’re going to take going forward,” Romney said. “The principles that have long been the hallmark of my party are very much in question. Do we believe in balancing the budget? Do we believe in standing up to people like Kim Jong Un and Vladimir Putin? Are we committed to the principle that character counts? These are all things that we’re going to have to decide over the coming years.”
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