McConnell Refuses To Address Trump Election Fraud Claims

Nov 6, 2020

U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell, left, speaking Friday at a news conference with state Republican leaders.
Credit Ryland Barton

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell wouldn’t answer questions about President Donald Trump’s voter fraud claims during a press conference on Friday, instead referring reporters to a statement he made on Twitter.

McConnell’s response is a far cry from last year, when he publicly urged then-Gov. Matt Bevin to move on after the election despite Bevin’s unfounded claims of voter fraud.

Instead, McConnell repeatedly said that he had already covered the subject in his Tweet, in which he wrote “Every legal vote should be counted. Any illegally-submitted ballots must not. All sides must get to observe the process. And the courts are here to apply the laws & resolve disputes.”

“I’m not going to answer any hypotheticals about where we go from here,” McConnell said during the press conference.

“I think this is ultimately going to be decided, exactly what I said in my Tweet. You’re going to have contests, you’re going to have court decisions, that’s exactly how we settle disputes in this country.”

Trump has provided no credible evidence of voter fraud in the presidential election, which still hasn’t been formally settled as a handful of states continue to count ballots that could determine the outcome.

The aftermath of this year’s presidential election has similarities to Kentucky’s race for governor last year.

After Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear defeated incumbent Republican Gov. Bevin in last year’s election by about 5,000 votes, Bevin initially refused to concede the election, falsely claiming that there were a “number of significant irregularities.”

Bevin hinted that he would seek a recount of the election, which would have allowed the Republican-led legislature to determine the outcome.

But he didn’t, after McConnell urged Bevin to move on after a re-tabulation of votes.

“My first election was almost exactly the same number of votes that Beshear won by. We had a re-canvass, they added them up, it didn’t change and we all moved on,” McConnell said at the time.

McConnell did say he believed there would be a peaceful transfer of power if former Vice President Joe Biden were ultimately elected.

“Of course, we’ve had a peaceful transfer of power going back to 1792. Every four years, you’ve gone on to a new administration,” McConnell said on Friday.

It’s still unclear if McConnell will still be the Senate majority leader after the elections. At the moment, Democrats and Republicans each have 48 seats after the election. Alaska and North Carolina’s Senate races are still too close to call and there will be runoff elections for Georgia’s two Senate seats.