After months of election-related challenges, President Donald Trump conceded this week that there would be an “orderly transition” to the administration of Democratic President-elect Joe Biden later this month.
In the wake of Wednesday’s congressional ratification of the Electoral College vote tally, however, even some in his own party — including U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) — chastised him for his rhetoric.
“Repudiate mob violence”
Cotton’s comments came in the wake of unrest and chaos in the nation’s capital as rioters stormed the Capitol building in an apparent attempt to support Trump’s claims of widespread voter fraud in the November election.
“It’s past time for the president to accept the results of the election, quit misleading the American people, and repudiate mob violence,” Cotton said, according to The Hill.
He was hardly alone in blaming the president for inciting violence, but Cotton appeared to hold Trump personally responsible for “insurrection” in connection with his election-related grievances.
Cotton also called out “the senators and representatives who fanned the flames by encouraging the president and leading their supporters to believe that their objections could reverse the election results,” asserting that they “should withdraw those objections,” The Hill noted.
It appeared to be his latest in a series of moves to distinguish his own position from those hoping to take up the president’s mantle, including Sens. Josh Hawley (R-MO) and Ted Cruz (R-TX).
“Orderly transition of power”
As Cotton explained on Sunday: “The Founders entrusted our elections chiefly to the states — not Congress. They entrusted the election of our president to the people, acting through the Electoral College — not Congress. And they entrusted the adjudication of election disputes to the courts — not Congress.”
Cotton’s move came as a shock to some, sparking conjecture regarding how it might impact his standing with Trump’s base.
Nevertheless, Biden was certified as the president-elect by the Senate after authorities restored peace to Capitol Hill, according to USA Today.
In his own statement early Thursday, Trump asserted that he remained committed to an “orderly transition of power” on Inauguration Day later this month, the New York Post reported.