“What does it say to the nearly half the country that believes this election was rigged, if we vote not even to consider the claims of illegality and fraud in this election?” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) asked Wednesday when he objected to the certification of Arizona’s Electoral College vote.
“And, I believe there is a better way,” Cruz told his colleagues in a speech on the Senate floor. “The leaders just spoke about setting aside the election. Let me be clear: I am not arguing for setting aside the result of this election.”
I rise on the Senate Floor today because our democracy is in crisis. We have an obligation to protect the integrity of our elections, and that's why I am calling for an Electoral Commission to conduct an emergency audit to examine voter fraud allegations. pic.twitter.com/FiJh6emFWx— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) January 6, 2021
“All of us are faced with two choices – both of which are lousy,” Sen. Cruz said:
“One choice is [to] vote against the objection. And tens of millions of Americans will see a vote against the objection as a statement that voter fraud doesn’t matter, isn’t real and shouldn’t be taken seriously. And, a great many of us don’t believe that.
“On the other hand, most, if not all of us, believe we should not set aside the results of an election because just because our candidate may not have prevailed.”
Cruz, then proposed choosing a third option, which he dubbed “Door Number Three”:
“And, so I endeavor to look for Door Number Three, a third option. And, for that I look to history, to the precedent of the 1876 election – the Hayes-Tillman election – where this Congress appointed an electoral commission to examine claims of voter fraud: five House members, five Senators, five Supreme Court Justices examined the evidence and rendered a judgement.
“And, what I would urge of this body is that we do the same.”
Cruz proposed conducting a 10-day, emergency audit of the evidence. If Democrats truly believe there is no evidence of voter fraud, then they should have no fear of an audit, because simply dismissing voters’ concerns will jeopardize the legitimacy of all future elections, Cruz warned.
The senator closed by imploring his colleagues on both sides of the aisle to resist the temptation to take “the easy path”:
“And so, let me urge my colleagues – all of us take our responsibility seriously – I would urge my colleagues: don’t take, perhaps, the easy path. But, instead, act together. Astonish the viewers and act in a bipartisan sense to say, ‘We will have a credible and fair tribunal, consider the facts, consider the evidence and make a conclusive determination whether