Politics Magazine

Cruz Votes Against Preserving Our Democratic System

Posted on the 05 October 2022 by Jobsanger
Cruz Votes Against Preserving Our Democratic SystemThe following is by the editorial board of the Houston Chronicle

The chaos of the attempted coup on Jan. 6, 2021, is far from behind us. Congressional hearings are still sorting through evidence while the former president cozies up ever closer with right-wing extremists. Some elected officials are working to ensure that such a scene never unfolds again.

It’s heartening, then, that a bill meant to protect against some of the events of that consequential day has garnered bipartisan support this week in the name of defending democracy.

The Electoral Count Reform and Presidential Transition Improvement Act would make it more difficult for insurgent interests to overturn the results of a presidential election by requiring more members, one-fifth of both the House and the Senate, to agree to raise such an objection. Currently, it only takes one member from each chamber to do so.

It also clarified several other procedures that former President Donald Trump had tried to use to challenge the 2020 election results, including pressuring the vice president to intervene.

“After 150 years, the Electoral Count Act needs some modest updates,” Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said. “The chaos that came to a head Jan. 6 of last year strongly suggests that we find careful ways to clarify and streamline the process.”

The bill is less restrictive than the version the House passed last week, without a single vote from a Texas Republican, but it won near unanimous support from the bipartisan Senate Rules Committee.

Only one senator refused to vote for the bill that McConnell called “common sense.”

Anybody want to guess which senator deemed the legislation “bad for democracy?” Could it be the Texas Republican who also tried to halt the certification of President Joe Biden’s election to office? The one who, when Trump asks him to jump, says “how high?”

Ding. Ding. Ding.

That’s right, it’s Sen. Ted Cruz, a man whose principles are so limber they’d make Gumby look stiff at the joints.

His plan to delay the certification of the 2020 election with a needless, duplicative audit helped inspire the insurrectionists to attack the Capitol and he kept that hope alive even after, voting to reject Arizona’s election results.

“I think that Senator Cruz knew exactly what he was doing,” Republican Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney said in a podcast earlier this year. “I think that Senator Cruz is somebody who knows what the Constitution calls for, knows what his duties and obligations are, and was willing, frankly, to set that aside.”

Cruz has kept the act up, saying that the election reform bill would reduce “the ability of Congress to respond to the very serious problem of voter fraud.”

Not so. If indeed there is a “very serious” allegation of voter fraud that’s supported by strong evidence, then each chamber should be able to rally support among individual members to challenge the results, even at the higher threshold.

The truth, though, is that while nagging isolated incidents of election fraud still occur, they’re exceedingly rare and firm laws are in place to deal with them. Cases where fraud affects the outcome of elections are almost unheard of in modern times. Indeed, almost everyone in Trump’s orbit has confessed, many under oath, that fraud was not an honest concern in the 2020 election.

A real, honest-to-goodness problem for our democratic republic is unscrupulous politicians such as Cruz and the Texas Republican House members, who would rather play at insurrection than protect America from extremists who are ready to do much more than play.

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