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COLUMNS

Jim Slattery: Patriotic Republicans will stand up and accept election results

By Jim Slattery
Special to Gannett Kansas

Political leaders who share the hard truth with their followers show them the respect they deserve.

The best leaders trust their followers with the truth because they know that without truth trust is impossible. Truth is the foundation of trust. Trust is the cement that holds human relationships together, including our democracy.

Today it is sad to watch political leaders in Kansas and around the country, including our president, disrespect their followers by refusing to acknowledge the simple truth. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won the election. Allegations that the election was stolen are without merit.

A record number of Americans voted. A fact we should celebrate. Eighty million voted for Biden and Harris. Seventy-four million voted for Trump and Pence. These voters delivered 306 Electoral College votes for Biden and 232 for Trump.

Some elected politicians continue to feed the delusions of our current president and undermine our democracy by telling their followers that the election was stolen. They are aiding and abetting our enemies around the world like Vladimir Putin who want to discredit the United States.

Let’s check the facts.

President Trump’s attorney general, Bill Barr, has concluded there is no evidence of fraud sufficient to affect the outcome of the election.

Republican governors who supported Trump in Arizona (Doug Ducey) and Georgia (Brian Kemp) have courageously certified Biden-Harris as the winners in their states. Some Republican officials are receiving death threats for simply counting the votes and reporting the outcome.

Republican legislators in Michigan certified that Biden-Harris won their state even after Trump called them to the White House to pressure them to overturn the outcome of the election in their state.

A Trump-appointed Republican federal judge in Pennsylvania wrote a scathing opinion throwing out the president’s lawsuit in his state.

The U.S. Supreme Court, including all three of President Trump’s recent appointees, unanimously rejected a frivolous lawsuit filed by the attorney general of Texas that was sadly joined by the Kansas attorney general. In layman’s language, the Republican-dominated U.S. Supreme Court took just a few minutes to tell the Republican Texas attorney general to get lost.

To date, the Trump campaign has filed more than 50 lawsuits in seven states seeking to overturn the election. They have all failed.

Why does the Trump legal team, led by Rudy Giuliani, continue this embarrassing and losing effort? Kansans, especially sincere Trump followers, would be wise to follow the money. It has been reported that Giuliani is billing $20,000 per day. This is a clear incentive for Trump lawyers to continue baseless litigation.

Why does President Trump refuse to do what every other losing presidential candidate has done and congratulate the winner? Again, follow the money.

Since Election Day, the Trump campaign has raised more than $200 million from loyal followers who have been deceived by chants of “stop the steal” and unsupported claims of fraud. It is not clear how this money will be spent, but lawyers like Guiliani are getting a lot of it.

It is time for all Republican-elected officials to do what the facts and their oath of office demands. Tell your constituents the hard truth. The people have spoken and their will must be honored even when we are bitterly disappointed.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris defeated Donald Trump and Mike Pence fair and square. Republican leaders who refuse to stand up and tell the simple truth about this election are parties to a historic assault on our democracy.

They are also parties to a sad defrauding of thousands of sincere citizens who have been led to believe by Trump that this election was stolen. Many of these citizens have responded by sending the Trump campaign a donation to support the fight to prevent Biden and Harris from being sworn into office.

It is time for patriotic Republican officials to end this nonsense before people are hurt. Thoughtful voters are taking note.

Jim Slattery represented the 2nd District in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1983 to 1995.