A growing number of Senate Republicans are ready to publicly acknowledge what’s been widely known for weeks but what they’ve refused to say: Joe Biden won the presidency and will be sworn in on January 20.What they’re less certain about: What President Donald Trump will do after the Electoral College votes on Monday and how they plan to respond if he won’t concede after Biden is the official winner.
“Trump’s going to do what Trump is going to do,” said Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, who has asserted that Biden will be the President-elect once the Electoral College votes on Monday, but told CNN that it’s Trump’s call on conceding the race. “That’s the only answer I’m going to give you.
“For weeks, Republicans in the House and Senate have refused to acknowledge Biden’s victory, arguing that Trump has a right to pursue his case in court and staying mostly silent as the President wages a rhetorical assault on a foundation of democracy by arguing baselessly that the election was “stolen” and “rigged.”
And after interviews with more than two dozen Republican senators, many of them have pointed to December 14 as the defining moment — when electors meet in their state capitals to make the results official. Yet they are also confronting a new reality: Biden will officially clinch the necessary electoral votes to assume the presidency and the President is showing no signs of letting up.
Many Republicans won’t say if they’ll acknowledge the electoral reality next week. But others are ready to move on and acknowledge Biden won.
“It is unhealthy for the well-being of our country, and our relations around the world if we spend time debating the outcome of the election once the presidential race has been determined,” Sen. Jerry Moran, a Kansas Republican, said in an interview. “The country is so divided today that it is not helpful that we would continue to have a debate about the process. Fix any problems with the process, but the outcome of an election can’t be something that is debated for the next four years.”