January 18, 2021

Grant County Herald

Community news from the prairie to the lakes

Accountability: Silence is deafening for state GOP members of Congress

MANKATO FREE PRESS

Editorial Board

In a sign of just how far President Donald Trump can wield his influence by threat, Minnesota’s GOP members of Congress have been silent on his baseless claims, bullying behavior, and rampant retaliation in regard to his election loss.

Minnesotans should be scared and worried that these duly elected representatives see fit to answer to a political pariah before answering to those who voted for them and who they purportedly represent.

The Star Tribune has contacted the representatives more than once since the election and the members of Congress have ignored multiple requests to comment on the election of Joe Biden and Trump’s bogus claims of fraud.

It’s disappointing and troubling.

In a Star Tribune report, longtime Republican leader Andy Brehm has rightly called out the members of Congress for remaining silent.

“The president lost the election; that is crystal clear,” said Brehm, a former Republican operative who worked for former U.S. Sen. Norm Coleman and former President George W. Bush.

While Brehm told the Star Tribune he has “enormous respect” for the GOP members of Congress, he said “To go along in silence with this charade is irresponsible.”

And while he said he’s not a Trump fan, he believes the president had a productive four years. He also said Trump did better than expected and other Republican candidates benefitted from that, but added: “the president’s behavior since the election has been off-the-charts horrible, and I don’t think it’s too much to expect our elected officials to state their opinion on this.”

The silence of the GOP delegation sends a signal that congressional representatives will consider concerns about Trump support ahead of the interests of Minnesotans. Trump got more votes than three of the four GOP candidates themselves in their own districts. That is what experts say is driving this blind allegiance.

Trump has shown his willingness to bully those who cross him and challenge them with hand-picked candidates in primaries. The president doesn’t appear to be going anywhere soon, with many suggesting even on inauguration day he may announce his candidacy for the 2024 election.

Representatives Pete Stauber, Tom Emmer, Jim Hagedorn, and Michelle Fischbach need to tell Minnesotans how they stand on Trump’s baseless claims for election fraud. Not doing so further feeds the false narrative of a corrupt election system.