Most GOP Senators Stay Mum on Trump's Efforts to Challenge Election, After Washington Post Contacted All 53 of Them

As President Donald Trump has continued to challenge election results, few Republican Senators have spoken out against the president's efforts to sway the results in his favor. The Washington Post reached out to all 53 Republican senators and only received few responses.

The president has openly challenged the election results multiple times, often sharing conspiracy theories (such as claiming that Dominion Voting Systems deleted votes for him as well as changing votes for him to President-elect Joe Biden). As the president has filed lawsuits to challenge election results as well as publicly tweeting that he was the actual victor in the 2020 race, far few Republicans have publicly spoken out against his actions.

Trump has shared many claims that voter fraud was the reason for his loss, despite most those claims being disputed.

Massive voter fraud will be shown!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 21, 2020

The Washington Post said that less than 10 senators' offices responded, and "most declined to comment or referred to previous remarks."

Only three Republican senators have pushed back at Trump's voter fraud claims: Maine's Susan Collins, Utah's Mitt Romney, and Nebraska's Ben Sasse.

Collins said that while legal battles were the "right way" to challenge election results, she criticized the president for "attempt[ing] to pressure state election officials." She also said that those still planning to certify their results "should proceed to certify their election results as scheduled."

Romney also criticized Trump for putting pressure on local officials. "It is difficult to imagine a worse, more undemocratic action by a sitting American President," he said.

Sasse pointed to a recent press conference held by Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani alleging that voter fraud was the reason the president didn't win the election. "So no, obviously Rudy and his buddies should not pressure electors to ignore their certification obligations under the statute. We are a nation of laws, not tweets," Sasse said.

While many stayed silent, some Republicans have commented about the transfer of power, acknowledging that Biden was expected to take office in January. Others also made remarks about the Trump campaign's efforts, but didn't necessarily show support. The Post reported that Alaska Senator Dan Sullivan said that the president's lawyers have "got to prove it in court," speaking about the importance of making sure each vote is counted.

Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn made similar comments in an interview with ABC News, asking that the president's campaign to present evidence in court to back up his fraud claims.

Even though Trump has continued to challenge the results, some senators have pushed for him to begin the transfer of power. Tennessee Republican Senator Lamar Alexander said that the current administration "should provide the Biden team with all transition materials, resources, and meetings necessary to ensure a smooth transition so that both sides are ready on day one." He also said that recounts would help Americans ensure that the results are valid.

My statement on the presidential election.

— Sen. Lamar Alexander (@SenAlexander) November 20, 2020

Responding to Newsweek's request for comment, Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's press secretary deferred to statements made by McConnell earlier this week. On Thursday, CNN reported that McConnell spoke about the election process.

"In all these presidential elections, we go through this process, and we're going to have an orderly transfer from this administration to the next one. What we all say about it is frankly irrelevant," he said.

Mitt Romney
Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) talks to reporters in the Senate subway following a vote in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol on November 12, 2020 in Washington, DC. Romney was one of three Republican Senators to criticize Trump's efforts to overturn election results to The Washington Post. Getty/Samuel Corum