CBS late-night anchor Stephen Colbert, in his Thursday monologue, called on U.S. Republicans to denounce a speech by President Donald Trump in which Trump claimed that the Democrats were trying to steal the presidential election.
Trump’s allegations, which provoked national and local opposition from Democrats and Republicans, were presented without evidence. Colbert, who mostly refrained from jokes during his monologue on Trump’s statements, encouraged Republicans to end their support for Trump and reject Trump’s message.
“With all the predictable behavior of the last few days and the last four years,” Colbert said, “something unpredictable must be happening now. The Republicans must raise their voices. All of them.”
“For evil to succeed, it is only necessary that good people do nothing,” Colbert continued, paraphrasing the British philosopher John Stuart Mill. “So say something now, Republicans.”
Colbert also described Trump as a “fascist” and encouraged Republicans to get off the “Trump train because it is not a passenger train, and one day he will invite you on it too.
Washington Newsday reached out to the Trump re-election campaign for comment.
Trump claimed that the postal ballots, which were still counted two days after the presidential election, were “illegal” votes that threatened the integrity of the entire process.
“If you count the legal votes, I win easily,” Trump said. “If you count the illegal votes, they may try to steal the election from us. If you count the votes that were late, we look at them very closely.”
Illinois Republican Representative Adam Kinzinger tweeted on Thursday that Trump must provide tangible evidence for his allegations of election fraud.
“We want every vote to be counted, indeed every legal vote (of course),” Kinzinger wrote. “But if you have legitimate concerns about election fraud, present evidence and take it to court. Stop spreading exposed misinformation… This is getting crazy.”
We want every vote to be counted, every legal vote (of course). But if you have legitimate concerns about fraud, present PROOF and take them to court. Stop spreading exposed misinformation… This is getting crazy.
– Adam Kinzinger (@RepKinzinger) November 6, 2020
Former Republican Senator of Pennsylvania, Rick Santorum, called Trump’s remarks “disappointing and shocking” when he appeared on CNN on Thursday. Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who also advised Trump, criticized Trump’s remarks in ABC News on Thursday. “That kind of thing – everything they do is flaring up without informing,” Christie said.
Not all Republicans were quick to distance themselves from Trump’s claims. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham said in an interview with Fox News anchor Sean Hannity that he stood by Trump.
“The allegations of misconduct are world-shaking,” Graham said. “Every Republican in the Senate and House of Representatives must come on television and tell this story. Graham also said he would donate $500,000 to Trump’s legal defense fund….