Donald Trump: The Republicans still promoting president's claims of election fraud

·3-min read

While many prominent Republicans are now distancing themselves from Donald Trump, others are still promoting his discredited claims of election fraud.

The outgoing president's staunch ally, former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani, tweeted on Thursday that while he "rejected" the violence at the Capitol building, the aim was to end "voter fraud".

"Our cause is to obtain an honest vote and to end voter fraud before it becomes a permanent tactic of the enabled and media protected Democrat Party," he tweeted. "Violence is rejected, condemned and counter productive."

Mr Giuliani appeared keen to keep an argument going, however, when he added: "It was as criminal as the rioting and looting this summer which was not condemned strongly enough by the Left."

The claim of electoral fraud was dismissed by former president George W Bush, who said: "This is how election results are disputed in a banana republic - not our democratic republic."

Regarding some of the data, Georgia's Republican secretary of state, Brad Raffensperger, said after an extraordinary phone call with Mr Trump at the weekend that the president's information was "just plain wrong".

Those comments appear not to have deterred other Republicans from continuing with Mr Trump's narrative, however.

Josh Hawley - one of more than a dozen Republican senators who had said they would seek to oppose the vote to certify Joe Biden's presidential victory - condemned the violence while also calling for an investigation into "irregularities and fraud".

The Kansas City Star newspaper, in the state where Mr Hawley is a senator - Missouri - said in an editorial that he had "blood on his hands" for seeking to enable Mr Trump's false claims.

Another Republican senator who had intended to try to oppose Mr Biden's certification, Ted Cruz, tweeted on Thursday that he and some of his colleagues had called for an electoral commission to "give Americans confidence in this past election and in elections going forward".

While condemning the violence, he claimed that requesting an electoral commission was the "right thing to do", adding: "I very much wish Congress had not set aside these concerns."

Senator Ron Johnson also condemned the violence, but added: "I refuse to dismiss the legitimate concerns of tens of millions of Americans who have lost faith in our institutions and the fairness of our electoral process. Those who have lost confidence are not crazy."

A senator from Indiana, Mike Braun, tweeted that while "today's events changed things drastically", he would "continue to push for a thorough investigation into the election irregularities many Hoosiers are concerned with".

Senator Cynthia Lummis said that while the violence was "sickening", "discussions of election integrity must occur".

She added: "The allegations of fraud during this election were unprecedented, and left millions of Americans concerned that their votes didn't count."

Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter and economic adviser, told "American patriots" on Twitter that "any security breach or disrespect to our law enforcement is unacceptable".

When asked whether she truly believed the protesters were indeed patriots, she deleted her tweet and replied: "No. Peaceful protest is patriotic. Violence is unacceptable and must be condemned in the strongest terms."

Republicans who have been clear in their condemnation of the message the president has been spreading include Representative Nancy Mace, who said his accomplishments in office "were wiped out today".

She tweeted: "Don't spread toxic disinformation and act surprised when people take it literally."

One of the president's closest allies in Congress, Senator Lindsey Graham, said "enough is enough".

Representative Liz Cheney told Fox News: "The president incited the mob. He lit the flame."

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not condemn Mr Trump. But in a tweet, he described the protesters as "criminals".

Meanwhile, there have been resignations following the shocking scenes on Capitol Hill.

Stephanie Grisham, Melania Trump's chief of staff and a former White House press secretary, decided to quit, as did Deputy National Security Adviser Matt Pottinger, White House Social Secretary Rickie Niceta and Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Matthews.