WATCH: Ted Cruz’s Jan. 6 speech laid out GOP strategy for ‘third option’ to ensure election integrity
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WASHINGTON, D.C., January 13, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — Though lost beneath the broader news coverage of January 6, a speech that day by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, objecting to the immediate counting of presidential election ballots from contested states, described the “third option” proposed by 11 GOP senators to ensure election integrity.
In the joint session of Congress, Paul Gosar, R-Arizona – one of more than 100 House Republican lawmakers expected to object to the certification – initiated the process contesting the results from his home state. He and Cruz were welcomed with significant applause by dozens of members who joined them.
In his remarks, Sen. Cruz warned how “half the country” was convinced that significant election fraud occurred during last fall’s presidential election.
“I would note it’s not just Republicans who believe that,” he said. “Thirty-one percent of Independents agree with that statement (and) 17 percent of Democrats believe the election was rigged. Even if you do not share that conviction, it is the responsibility, I believe, of this office to acknowledge that is a profound threat to this country, and to the legitimacy of any administrations that will come in the future.”
Challenging his fellow Republicans who were planning on voting against these objections, Cruz urged them to reconsider: “What does it say to nearly a half of the country who believe this election was rigged if we vote not even to consider the claims of illegality and fraud in this election?”
He acknowledged there were two obvious choices before the legislators, “both of which are lousy.”
“One choice is vote against the objection, and tens of millions of Americans will see a vote against the objection as a statement that voter fraud doesn’t matter, it isn’t real, and shouldn’t be taken seriously.”
“On the other hand, most if not all of us believe we should not set aside the results of an election just because our candidate may not have prevailed. And so,” he said, “I endeavored to look for door number three, the third option, and for that I looked to history, to the precedent of the 1876 election, the Hayes vs. Tilden election, where this Congress appointed an electoral commission to examine claims of voter fraud: five House members, five senators, five Supreme Court justices (to) examine the evidence and render a judgment.”
“And what I would urge of this body is that we do the same, that we appoint an electoral commission to conduct a 10-day emergency audit, consider the evidence and resolve the claims.”
“For those on the democratic aisle who say ‘there is no evidence, they’ve been rejected,’ then you should rest in comfort,” Cruz said. “If that’s the case, an electoral commission would reject those claims.
“But for those who respect the voters, simply telling the voters, ‘Go jump in the lake. The fact that you have deep concerns is of no moment to us,’ that jeopardizes, I believe, the legitimacy of this and subsequent elections.”
Cruz affirmed, “The Electoral Count Act explicitly allows objections such as this one for votes that were not regularly given,” and urged his colleagues “to have a credible, objective, impartial body hear the evidence and make a conclusive determination.”
This, he said, “would benefit both sides,” and “improve (the) legitimacy of this election.”