Coloradans in Congress respond to Trump’s baseless election-rigging claims

Democrats in Colorado’s congressional delegation criticized a speech by President Donald Trump in which he claimed, without evidence, that the Nov. 3 election was rigged and stolen from him, calling the president’s words reckless and absurd.

“Such dangerous rhetoric undermines the fundamental institutions that have governed our republic since its founding, and must be rejected,” said Rep. Joe Neguse, a Lafayette Democrat.

Two Republicans in the delegation, meanwhile, did not directly echo or condemn the president’s remarks but suggested some votes may have been cast illegally.

“Every vote that complies with state election laws should count. Illegal votes undermine the integrity of the election process and confidence in the electorate,” said Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colorado Springs.

“Congressman Buck believes that all legal votes should be counted and that the process should be fully transparent,” said a spokeswoman for the Windsor Republican, who also chairs the Colorado Republican Party. “It is important that we protect the integrity of our free and fair elections.”

On Thursday evening, Trump spoke for 17 minutes from the White House, casting himself as the victim of a vast conspiracy to corruptly remove him from office. Despite offering no evidence of illegal votes, he claimed to have won the election “if you count the legal votes.” The election remains too close to call at this time.

On Friday, The Denver Post asked the offices of all nine members of Congress from Colorado whether they agree with the president’s allegations. Seven of the nine responded, the exceptions being Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Yuma, and Rep. Scott Tipton, a Cortez Republican. Both lost elections this year.

“Who could possibly be surprised by that press conference? I mean, honestly,” said Rep. Jason Crow, an Aurora Democrat and former prosecutor in the impeachment trial of Trump last winter. “After four years of the president doing things like this, this is not surprising. It’s terrible, to be sure.”

“He has shown repeatedly a willingness to use the power of the presidency, taxpayer money, and the bully pulpit to undermine our democracy for his own personal, political self-interest, and I think he’ll continue to do that,” Crow said.

Sen. Michael Bennet, a Denver Democrat, called the president’s remarks “absurd and dangerous,” adding that they will “fuel conspiracy theories and sow division” rather than unite the nation. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, an Arvada Democrat, called them an attempt to “undermine the will of American voters.”

Rep. Diana DeGette, another Denver Democrat, said the president’s words are “not only un-presidential, they are un-American. And they should be condemned by every single leader in this country, regardless of party.”

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