Home 2020 Elections Video: Sen. Mark Warner Predicts “Close to 80 Senators” Will Vote to...

Video: Sen. Mark Warner Predicts “Close to 80 Senators” Will Vote to Certify Biden/Harris’ Victory, But “it will probably be a wild next 72 hours”

Warner says he hopes VP Pence shows up, "it's his constitutional duty"; says this entire "spectacle" is a big "propaganda" win for Putin, N. Korea, China, etc.

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Sen. Warner spoke with reporters a little while ago. Among other things, Sen. Warner said:

  • We “live in interesting times,” and it’s been “erratic to say the least.” 
  • “On the positive side,” Trump signed the COVID-19 relief package, providing around $15 billion to Virginians, which passed with “overwhelming bipartisan support.”
  • There was bipartisan action to override Trump’s veto of the defense funding bill.
  • Trump, “in his waning days, in his efforts to disrupt our democracy and throw temper tantrums, threatened to veto the COVID bill and DID veto the defense authorization bill.
  • Traditionally, the counting of the certified electoral votes is  “a pro forma event” in the House and Senate. We already know the results – 306 EVs for Biden. But Trump, “in his unwillingness to acknowledge this loss, is continuously trying to disrupt the process and our democracy.” “And unfortunately, he’s now being enabled by at least 12 Senators on the Republican side…It will not change the results; we will go through a lot of bluster…Unfortunately, we do see Donald Trump once again putting his personal ego ahead of American national interests and now being enabled by at least a dozen members in the Senate and a number of members in the House. The hypocrisy of this effort is stunning…In some cases, loyalty to Donald Trump seems to well exceed allegiance to the constitution…Trump and a small group of legislators are trying to cheat the American public out of the fair election results that have been validated by Donald Trump’s own head of election security…former Attorney General…by over 60 judges…The results are clear – Donald Trump has been defeated, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be the next president and Vice President, but we could be going through a couple very rocky days as Mr. Trump has called his supporters into town to protest or potentially create violent circumstances…Our processes will be protected…This is an unfortunate way for this failed president to exit his last few days in office. But we will get through this…I think we will also see overwhelming majorities – close to 80 Senators – stand by our constitution and certify the results of electing…Joe Biden and Kamala Harris…but stay tuned, it will probably be a wild next 72 hours.”
  • Asked about State Sen. Amanda Chase (R) and her “inflammatory rhetoric,” Sen. Warner said he thinks “Virginians will reject the kind of extremism, just as they rejected Donald Trump, I think they will reject it in those people who are the pale imitators that are going to be brought forward this coming year…I think politics is done best when we have a center-left party and a center-right party that argue policy but don’t try to undermine people’s faith in our basic democratic process.”
  • On VP Pence presiding over the count tomorrow – or not – Sen. Warner said “I hope he would show up, it’s his constitutional duty.” Sen. Warner added that it’s the VP’s job simply to “basically record the electors’ count in the joint session,” and that Sen. Grassley would oversee the debate in the Senate over any objections. Sen. Warner said each state’s contesting could take four hours, so this could go into Thursday afternoon. He added that the “vast majority” of Republicans will vote to certify the election.
  • Sen. Warner said this “spectacle that will take place on screens across the world” could not be a “greater propaganda win for Vladimir Putin or the Iranian leadership or the North Korean leadership or the Chinese leadership.” He noted that none of his Republican colleagues on the Intelligence Committee are “part of this cabal.”
  • Sen. Warner said he’s concerned that vaccine distribution is not moving fast enough, blaming it on a “failure of leadership at the federal level.”
  • Sen. Warner said “I hope that the Republican Party will once again become the Republican Party and not simply an arm of Trumpism.”
  • Sen. Warner said that social media sites have “none of the responsibilities that everyone on this call has in terms of having any allegiance to truth,” and that that is a major concern. Relying on the “goodwill of Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg” is “not a system that can stand up to fear mongerers, hate mongerers or folks who preach far-fetched theories.” 
  • Sen. Warner concluded on a positive note, said we had a peaceful, free and fair election in the end with minimal foreign intervention, and said “our country will get through” the next 72 hours as well, despite some “trepidation.”

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