Senator Corman, let's be honest about the election.

Senator and President Pro Tempore Jake Corman recently granted an interview in The Centre Daily Times. In the wake of President Trump’s continued refusal to concede the Presidential Election to President-Elect Joe Biden, he addressed the law, a possible audit of the election, and President Trump’s lawsuits. I am cautiously optimistic about Senator Corman’s eventual position to stay out of the way of Secretary of State Boockvar and Governor Wolf’s certification of the election, but remain deeply disappointed in his continuing cover for the Trump administration’s immoral, dishonest, and abusive behavior.

First, I welcome a good-faith audit done on behalf of Pennsylvania’s citizens and our duly elected representatives. I encourage the Legislature to work through an independent and non-partisan commission that includes people with deep experience in Pennsylvania and national election law, as well as observers and analysts with experience in elections in other countries. Charged with understanding what worked well and what did not regarding the execution of a fair, free, and secure election will help us administer better elections in the future. I stress that it must be independent of partisan influence.

Second, and more troubling, Senator Corman says that President Trump—or any candidate—has a right to file lawsuits to interrogate or prosecute a case regarding an election. This claim may technically be true, but it is deeply disingenuous and obscures what’s at stake.


Mr. Trump is wielding his positional power without discipline and without responsibility. His lawyers have been so preoccupied with whether they can launch baseless lawsuits that they haven’t honestly concerned themselves with whether they should launch these lawsuits. Their sympathizers, even if soft in tone and using proper and official-sounding terms, are giving cover to actions that are anti-American. They corrode our democracy and the rule of common law. The most powerful man in the world needn’t sue when he has the entire governmental apparatus working to ensure whether he has won or lost.

The American legal system operates from a fundamental premise that people entering the court speak the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Mr. Trump, Rudy Giuliani (acting with an expired license) and Mr. Trump’s other lawyers are making hyperbolic, misdirecting, and unfounded allegations. They have been roundly and easily refuted by election officials from across the political spectrum. Sometimes, as in a court case in Pennsylvania’s Middle District, Mr. Giuliani did not even argue the substance of his case. It regarded just two men’s complaints in counties that Mr. Trump won, Fayette and Lancaster. But Mr. Trump used those complaints to question election results in other Pennsylvania counties that Mr. Biden won, including Centre. This lawsuit, like 31 others, is dead. The Trump campaign is now simply raging wind from the mouth of a sore loser with no legal recourse because the law is clear: the person who wins the most votes wins the election.

Today, there was news that Mr. Trump plans to invite Sen. Corman, Majority Leader Benninghoff, and perhaps other Republican leaders to the White House. This is the final Hail Mary pass that no one should even pretend they would catch. Michigan lawmakers went to the White House yesterday where they were pressed to upend Michigan’s results. They declined. Our leaders have pledged they will do what the law requires. I encourage them to thank the President for the invitation, ask him for federal assistance regarding COVID-19 relief, and decline and forcefully rebut any requests regarding Pennsylvania’s results.

With each passing day Republicans entertain this unpresidential fit, our national health and security are put in jeopardy. Two days after the Associated Press called the 2016 Election for Donald Trump, former President Obama had him in the White House. That election was closer than this one. No Republican leaders had any issues with then President-Elect Trump’s access to briefings on issues across agencies dealing with our nation’s myriad issues. In an age of cyber threats, unconventional weaponry, an accelerating climate crisis, concerns over policing and public safety, and a pandemic that has cost 253,000 lives, the nation need a rapid and peaceful transition of power. And it’s not Democrats who are saying this. It is former Pennsylvania Governor, first Secretary of Homeland Security, Republican Tom Ridge.

Finally—and most bizarrely—Senator Corman and his fellow Republicans are calling into question the election that delivered them victories down-ballot. Forgive me if I am flummoxed by the twisted logic it takes to say that the ballots are just fine for the victories of Reps. Irvin, Borowicz, and Benninghoff over Ian Kidd, Joe Waltz and me, but not for Joseph Biden over Donald Trump. There is no logic there. It is fealty to Mr. Trump’s ego.

I encourage all citizens to continue contacting Senator Corman and other Republican leaders. Ask them to support a truly independent commission to audit the election so that our democracy thrives. Demand that they stop giving cover to attacks on your vote. Your nation and your Commonwealth need you.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

As constituents, it is up to us to keep the pressure on Senator Corman, Representative Benninghoff, and these other elected officials to ensure the protection of our voices, the validity of our votes, and the true representation of our vested interest in democracy. Here are some action steps you can take to reach these elected officials:

  • Call the offices of Benninghoff and Corman, with a template call script and numbers listed below.

  • Fax a statement to their offices, with a template letter that can be personalized, and the numbers below.

  • Submit a letter to their offices, with a template letter that can be personalized, and the submission links listed below.

  • Write a Letter To The Editor to any/all of the papers in the region, with guidelines listed below.

CALL SCRIPT

“As a constituent of [PA SD 34] OR [PA HD 171], we demand that if there is an audit of the Pennsylvania votes, it be done by an independent and non-partisan commission, that [Senator Corman] OR [Representative Benninghoff] cease to support the dangerous and baseless lawsuits pursued by the Trump administration, and that they reconcile their own down-ballot success to the peaceful transfer of power to the Biden administration.”

Benninghoff - Bellefonte Office: (814) 355-1300

Benninghoff - Reedsville Office: (717) 667-1175

Benninghoff - Harrisburg Office: (717) 783-1918

Corman - Bellefonte Office: (814) 355-0477

Corman - Lewistown Office: (717) 242-2410

Corman - Harrisburg Office: (717) 787-1377

FAX STATEMENT

“As a constituent of [PA SD 34] OR [PA HD 171], we demand that if there is an audit of the Pennsylvania votes, it be done by an independent and non-partisan commission, that [Senator Corman] OR [Representative Benninghoff] cease to support the dangerous and baseless lawsuits pursued by the Trump administration, and that they reconcile their own down-ballot success to the peaceful transfer of power to the Biden administration.”

Benninghoff - Bellefonte Office: (814) 355-3523

Benninghoff - Reedsville Office: (717) 667-6025

Benninghoff - Harrisburg Office: (717) 782-2913

Corman - Bellefonte Office: (814) 355-6046

Corman - Lewistown Office: (717) 242-4775

Corman - Harrisburg Office: (717) 772-3146

SUBMISSION LETTER TEMPLATE

To be copied, pasted, and personalized into the submission form:

“As a constituent of [PA SD 34] OR [PA HD 171], we demand that if there is an audit of the Pennsylvania votes, it be done by an independent and non-partisan commission, that [Senator Corman] OR [Representative Benninghoff] cease to support the dangerous and baseless lawsuits pursued by the Trump administration, and that they reconcile their own down-ballot success to the peaceful transfer of power to the Biden administration.”

Rep. Benninghoff Contact Form

Sen. Corman Contact Form

LETTER TO THE EDITOR GUIDELINES

  • Most Letters to the Editor allow for 250 words or less.

  • Your talking points can include: attack on democratic process; lack of voter fraud evidence; frivolous lawsuits and baseless claims; HR 1032; an independent, non-partisan audit; cajoling Trump’s ego vs. representation of constituents

  • Please feel free to use Peter Buck's statement as reference, as well as the above templates..

Centre Daily Times

Lewistown Herald

Huntingdon Daily News

Centre County Gazette



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