Ron Johnson (copy) (copy)


Wisconsinites voted for Joe Biden for president. It was a close result, but the intention of the voters has been confirmed by the capable counting of ballots by poll workers, by a meticulous recount of ballots cast in Dane and Milwaukee counties and by local, state and federal jurists.

Yet, Sen. Ron Johnson is now talking about joining an effort to reject the results from Wisconsin and other states on Jan. 6, the day when Congress is supposed to accept the results of the Electoral College vote that favors Biden by a 306-232 margin.

Johnson, the Wisconsin Republican who chairs the powerful Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, announced last week that he would abuse his position to convene a circus-like hearing to amplify Donald Trump’s sore-loser claims about “irregularities” in the Nov. 3 election where voters chose to replace the Republican president with Biden.

Why? Johnson’s intentions are clear. Despite the fact that Biden beat Trump by more than 7 million votes nationally, winning a higher percentage of the popular vote than any challenger to a sitting president since Franklin Roosevelt ousted Herbert Hoover in 1932, the Wisconsinite had signed on for Trump’s scheming to disrupt the transfer of power to the duly elected 46th president of the United States. There are no grounds for this illicit project. Indeed, as Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney, the GOP’s 2012 standard bearer, has said, the president’s project is “dangerous and destructive of the cause of democracy.”

Yet, Johnson continues to claim that “a large percentage of the American public does not view the 2020 election result as legitimate because of apparent irregularities that have not been fully examined.”

The only reason anyone in Wisconsin, anyone in the United States, anyone on the face of the planet, does not view the 2020 election result as legitimate is because Trump and Johnson keep lying about it.

Why does the senator from Wisconsin continue to insult the poll workers, the election officials, the judges and justices and, above all, the voters of Wisconsin? Johnson has made it abundantly clear that he values his relationship with Trump more than he does his duty to the people of Wisconsin and his oath to defend the Constitution of the United States.

Johnson has gone rogue, and he now proposes to extend his infamy into 2021.

On Jan. 6, the Senate must certify the Electoral College vote. Republican members of the House, led by Alabama’s Mo Brooks, plan to object. They won’t get far unless a member of the Senate joins in their plotting to force a contentious debate and vote on the certification of the results.

Unfortunately, Johnson has signaled that he may choose to be that senator.

The Wisconsin Republican claims that he’ll decide whether to object based on the circus-like hearing he has organized to amplify Trump’s false claims about “voter fraud” and “irregular” counting.

“I would say it depends on what we found out,” Johnson told reporters last week. “I need more information. The American people need more information.”

Like Trump, Johnson is lying. The information has already been gathered, reported, reviewed and analyzed. The issues have been resolved, at the polls, in the counts and recounts of ballots, and in the courts. Johnson is simply looking for an excuse to continue serving Trump — and to reject the will of the people of Wisconsin, who voted to give their electoral votes and the presidency to Biden.

John Nichols is associate editor of The Capital Times. and @NicholsUprising. 

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