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DFL Party Accuses MN Republicans of “Fanning the Flames of Future Insurrections”
On the eve of the one-year anniversary of the January 6th assault on the U.S. Capitol, the Minnesota DFL Party accused Minnesota Republicans of fanning the flames of future insurrections and violence by casting doubt on the legitimacy of President Biden’s election.
The DFL Party also released a detailed list of times when Minnesota Republicans helped erode the legitimacy of the United States government by attacking the validity of the 2020 elections and downplaying the significance of the January 6th insurrection.
DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin released the following statement:
“Minnesota Republican elected officials, candidates, and leaders at all levels have spent the last 15 months fanning the flames of future insurrections and violence by attacking the legitimacy of free and fair elections. The Republican assault on the 2020 elections, even after witnessing the disastrous consequences of such lies, is the greatest collective act of political cowardice and cynicism I have ever seen.”
“The foundation of a stable democracy is the consent of the governed, and if Minnesota Republicans continue to erode that consent by attacking the legitimacy of American elections and the American government, more violence will follow. I encourage all Minnesotans who believe in our democracy to set politics aside and become single-issue voters when it comes to the health of that democracy. A decisive rejection at the ballot box is the single best way to show Republicans that their assault on the legitimacy of the American government is not welcome here in Minnesota.”
On December 9th, 2020, DFL Party Chairman Ken Martin warned in an op-ed that “the sad truth is that when election results we do not like become election results we cannot accept, the likelihood of political violence increases.” Less than one month later, a mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to use violence to overturn a free and fair election.
Fanning the Flames of Future Insurrections and Violence
Below is a non-comprehensive list of the ways that Minnesota Republican elected officials, leaders, and candidates have downplayed the January 6th insurrection or propped up the Big Lie that fueled the assault on the United States Capitol.
Before the Insurrection
- In early November of 2020, Congresswoman-elect Fischbach claimed that “they [Democrats] did not win the votes of the American people, they are just finding votes at this point.”
- One month after the 2020 election, none of Minnesota’s Republican members of Congress would acknowledge Joe Biden’s victory.
- As late as December 17th, 2020, Congressman Tom Emmer would not call Joe Biden the President-elect.
- Representatives Hagedorn, Emmer, and Stauber asked the Supreme Court to overturn President Biden’s election.
- Representative Stauber claimed there were “questions on the integrity of this presidential election.”
- 15 Republican state lawmakers requested that the Texas Attorney General include Minnesota in a lawsuit seeking to invalidate the results of the 2020 elections.
- Senate Majority Leader Paul Gazelka spread misinformation on social media about postal workers throwing out Trump ballots and about dead people voting and claimed that these false stories may have been enough to swing Georgia to Donald Trump.
- The Republican Party of Minnesota repeated baseless accusations of “voter irregularities” grounded in no evidence whatsoever.
- The Republican Party of Minnesota recruited local party leaders to amplify baseless claims of voter fraud.
- State Senator Mary Kiffmeyer issued a statement attacking the legitimacy of the 2020 elections, saying she was concerned about “reports of irregular election activity, questions on software, equipment malfunctions and other concerns during this year’s election.”
- Numerous Republican candidates who lost their elections sued over those loses, citing vague and completely unverified claims of irregularities and fraud.
During the Insurrection
- Half a dozen Republican Representatives attended a January 6th “Storm the Capitol” rally in Minnesota.
- During this rally, the Chair of the House District 53A Minnesota Republican Party promised that “we are going to fight, we are going to go down, there’s going to be casualties.”
- Another speaker said the country was close to a civil war and that violence was needed.
- The crowd at the rally cheered the news that the Republican mob in DC was storming the U.S. Capitol building.
After the Insurrection
- Representatives Hagedorn and Fischbach voted against certifying the results of the 2020 presidential election.
- Representatives Hagedorn, Emmer, Fischbach, and Stauber voted against establishing a bipartisan commission to investigate the insurrection.
- Republican House Minority Leader Daudt and then-Republican Senate Majority Leader Gazelka refused to denounce the Big Lie a week after the insurrection.
- 8 months after the 2020 election, then-MNGOP Chair Carnahan refused to say the election wasn’t stolen.
- State Senator Mark Koran raised money for the legal defense of people arrested for breaching the Capitol and assaulting law enforcement on January 6th.
- Republican Congressional candidate Tyler Kistner, through a spokesperson, “declined to answer questions about whether Kistner believed Biden legitimately won the election.”
- Kistner also falsely claimed he would have won his 2020 campaign if not for non-existent voter fraud.
- Republican candidate for governor of Minnesota Scott Jensen praised Mike Lindell for his work spreading conspiracy theories and misinformation regarding the 2020 election.
- All five of the Republican candidates for governor of Minnesota refused to say that Joe Biden legitimately won the 2020 election.
- 7 Republican state lawmakers signed a letter calling for an audit of Minnesota’s presidential election despite no evidence of wrongdoing whatsoever.
- Numerous Republican state lawmakers attended Mike Lindell’s “Cyber Symposium” which purported (and failed) to show evidence of a fraudulent 2020 election.
- On the anniversary of the insurrection, no Republican members of Congress would discuss it with the media.
- When asked about the insurrection, Chair of the Minnesota Republican Party David Hann said “I certainly would call it a disturbance of some kind, but I have not been spending a lot of time thinking about it, and I don’t know anybody else who has other than Democrats and I guess the media,”
- While campaigning for MN GOP Chair, Hann promised activists an audit of the source code of Minnesota’s voting machines, which reinforced conspiracy theories around vote-switching taking place in voting machines.