Representative Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) hammered President Donald Trump on Monday for hosting an election theft summit at the White House over the weekend.
Trump and his Chief of Staff Mark Meadows welcomed the conspiracy peddling “Kraken” lawyer Sidney Powell and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn into the Oval Office on Friday night to brood over what options the president has to remain in power.
According to The New York Times, the powwow quickly collapsed into a shouting match among Trump’s staffers over chimeras such as appointing Powell as a special counsel to investigate Trump’s imaginary voter fraud claims. Attorney General William Barr, whose last day on the job is this Wednesday, has shot down that idea.
Or that Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s schvitzy, feckless television attorney, inquired to the Department of Homeland Security about seizing voting machines.
Flynn, meanwhile, has publicly demanded on multiple occasions that Trump declare martial law – quite the ‘thank you’ for the pardon he received in November.
Kinzinger said on CNN that although the concept of mobilizing troops to indulge Trump’s delusions is absolutely crazy, it merits discussion because his peons are egging him on:
I think it’s nuts. Look at what’s being discussed about martial law. I think there’s a lot of people that don’t necessarily understand what martial law is. They know it basically sounds ominous, right? Martial law is basically the federal military coming in and suspending the authority of state or local governments. So you would have in essence the federal military come in and say, ‘we’re taking over to rerun an electionn because this one wasn’t to our liking.’ And it’s interesting. If you look at the president’s statement of administration policy in 2019, and I think it was HR-1, a Democratic election bill which I voted against, one of their big points was that they believe in state and local control of elections, and I agree. So I think the idea of sending, I mean, beyond the insanity of ‘the election was completely stolen, we can’t prove it, we just know it,’ the idea of sending the military in to rerun it would be a massive, massive red line and I’m certain the president won’t do it but I think it’s certainly worth talking about because people around him advocating for it.
Kinzinger said that the final month of Trump’s promises to be a “wild ride” as Trump’s desperation grows, and he blames social media for amplifying Trump’s lies:
Here’s the problem. I hate Twitter, by the way, but I’ve been watching it, because usually, you get the conspiracy that then end up making it mainstream within just a day or two. The idea John Roberts yelled at the Supreme Court and forced the real conservatives to vote against the Texas [lawsuit], a total lie, total fabrication but most people believe it’s real, same with the Dominion voting machine issue, the ’68 percent error rate’ that was found in an audit isn’t true at all, and you find out that it was a human error in a Republican county. But the problem is so much misinformation is thrown out constantly that you lose track of what you ever believed. You forget if anything’s ever debunked and you’re always on to the next piece of misinformation to the point where you believe, somehow on January 6th, the US Congress can overthrow the results of an election, or that we even have a role in determining who the president is. We don’t.
The Congressman also blasted his GOP congressional colleagues for personally profiting off of Trump’s nonsense:
But there has been some not serious people in Congress that have convinced their base for retweets and money that we can as members of Congress go out and determine that we just want Trump to be the president again in 2020.
Kinzinger added that despite his aversion to Twitter, “that’s where a lot of stuff is happening,” and that Republicans – and Americans in general – “do not do enough to address the conspiracy theories as they come up… we’ve gotta push that stuff back.”
Kinzinger vowed to “continue to be aggressive” in debunking dubious claims, even if it means he “continues to receive death threats” and accusations that he is “in the pocket of China” or that he “started ISIS.”
People believe all sorts of wacky and untrue things on Twitter, he said.
When asked why Trump is in denial about Russia’s gigantic cyber-attack, Kinzinger said that “it’s not a rhetorical question, and I really wanna know” why the president is still doing the bidding of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in spite of hardline administration policies.
“It’s quite obvious this is Russia, and maybe they did it with the help China, I don’t know, but I know we can’t push Russia aside and say it wasn’t them and it wasn’t that big of a deal,” Kinzinger said. He predicted that the historically huge hack “is gonna be the biggest deal we’ve had in this country in a very long time.”
Thirty days until the inauguration.
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Brandon is a political writer for the Hill Reporter specializing in current events, breaking news, and scientific discovery. Brandon holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University. He lives in New York City.