MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The following statement about the meeting of the Electoral College is by Margaret Huang, President and CEO of the SPLC Action Fund:
“Today, electors in the Electoral College will assemble in all 50 state capitals and the District of Columbia to formalize President-elect Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory in the 2020 election – and provide a clear rebuke to the Republican Party’s attempt to overturn the outcome of the election by mounting a direct and unprecedented assault on the core tenets of our democracy.
“Unfortunately, there are already clear signs that the Republican Party’s political onslaught is having dangerous real-world impacts. In some states, electors will be accompanied by police protection to prevent far-right and white supremacist extremists, inspired by the losing candidate’s false and inflammatory rhetoric, from violently interfering in a constitutionally-mandated ritual. Just this weekend, those same forces rioted in the streets of our nation’s capital. And there are reasons to fear that the violence will only grow as the January 20th presidential inauguration draws closer.
“There’s never a place for political violence, and the current unrest is particularly unfounded. The 2020 general election was credible and secure. Voters across the country turned out at historic levels despite a once-in-a-century pandemic and unrelenting Republican attempts to making voting harder, particularly for communities of color.
“Repeated state recounts and audits did not alter any state’s outcome, and dozens of lawsuits alleging fraud were tossed out of federal and state courts. Most recently, the Supreme Court rejected a stunning Republican attempt to simply toss out the votes of tens of millions of their fellow Americans. That lawsuit – one literally unprecedented in American history – drew the support of nearly every Republican attorneys general, as well as 126 House Republicans – including its top elected leaders. Local and state election officials from both parties have fought the president’s attacks; Republicans at the federal level have set aside their constitutional duties and worked to undermine American democracy.
“History doesn’t repeat, but it rhymes. The remnants of the Lost Cause ideology of the Confederacy remain with us in 2020, infecting our education systems and slowing attempts to achieve true and lasting racial equity. The attacks on our democratic process won’t change the result of the Electoral College vote, but the substance of these attacks are likely to become a key belief of far-right radical groups – including those willing to use violence to achieve their political goals – into the indefinite future.
“We at the SPLC Action Fund are devoted to monitoring and combating future assaults on voting rights and the bedrock tenets of our democracy. Our country was built on a foundation of government by and for the people. That means all people must be prepared to defend our country from those who would subvert it from within.”