Mitt Romney described the violent mob of Donald Trump supporters that rioted in the U.S. Capitol as an “insurrection incited by the president of the United States” as the Senate reconvened Wednesday night.
The mob stormed the Capitol during proceedings to confirm Joe Biden as the winner of the 2020 election over false convictions perpetuated by Trump that the election was stolen.
“Now we gather due to a selfish man’s injured pride and the outrage of supporters who he has deliberately misinformed for the past two months and stirred to action this very morning,” the Utah senator said.
Romney, who was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007, frequently denounces Trump, a fellow Republican. Romney declined to vote for him in both 2016 and 2020, and he was the only Republican senator to vote for his impeachment in February.
Sen. Mitt Romney: “The best way we can show respect for the voters who are upset is by telling them the truth.” pic.twitter.com/uzKE6R7ror
— CSPAN (@cspan) January 7, 2021
“Those who choose to continue to support his dangerous gambit by objecting to the results of a legitimate democratic election will forever be seen as being complicit in an unprecedented attack against our democracy,” Romney said. “They’ll be remembered for their role in the shameful episode in American history. That will be their legacy.”
Romney praised several Republicans who initially planned to object to the election results but then reversed course after the shocking siege of the Capitol.
“For any who remain insistent on an audit in order to satisfy the many people who believe that the election was stolen, I’d offer this perspective,” Romney said. “No Congressional audit is ever going to convince these voters, particularly when the president will continue to say that the election was stolen.
“The best way we could show respect for the voters who were upset is by telling them the truth!” he said, to applause from the chamber.
“That’s the burden! That’s the duty of leadership. The truth is that president-elect Biden won the election. President Trump lost. I’ve had that experience myself. It’s no fun,” Romney added, referring to his failed bid to unseat President Barack Obama in 2012.
“I urge my colleagues to move forward with completing the electoral count, to refrain from further objections, and to unanimously affirmed the legitimacy of the presidential election,” he said.
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