After refusing to accept the election results, McConnell is now worried it could make the GOP look bad.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Tuesday pleaded with his GOP colleagues not to object to the results of the Electoral College on Jan. 6, when Congress plans to meet to formally accept President-elect Joe Biden's victory, multiple outlets reported.
House Republicans plan to object to the Electoral College tally — which Biden won 306 to 232 — over baseless allegations of voter fraud. Those House Republicans need a senator to object to force a vote from both chambers of Congress on whether to accept that final tally.
The stunt is destined to fail, because Democrats hold a majority of seats in the House and would not vote to overturn Biden's win. The stunt would also likely fail in the Senate, where Republicans like Pennsylvania's Pat Toomey and Utah's Mitt Romney have slammed their own party for not accepting the results.
But McConnell and other members of Senate Republican leadership fear that such a vote could hurt the GOP's chances in the midterm elections.
If they vote to uphold the Electoral College result and confirm Trump's loss, it could enrage Trump's loyal followers, possibly inspiring them to mobilize against Republicans up for reelection.
But if they vote to overturn the Electoral College results and invalidate millions of legally cast ballots in a free and fair election, it could mobilize the millions of voters who voted for Biden against Republicans in the midterms.
It's a "terrible vote" for Republicans, McConnell said on the call, according to Politico's Jake Sherman.
Of course, these same Republicans, including McConnell, have spent the past month refusing to acknowledge that Biden won the election, saying Trump was within his rights to contest the results in court.
They kept up that position, even as courts across the country threw out those challenges. Judges of all stripes chastised both the Trump campaign's lawyers and the Trump allies who filed lawsuits to help in the coup attempt for providing no evidence of fraud and trying to use the courts to overturn the will of the voters.
In fact, it took McConnell until Tuesday to call Biden the president-elect, a full 42 days since the election and 38 days since media outlets called the race.
"Our country has officially a president-elect and a vice president-elect," McConnell said in a speech on the Senate floor. "The Electoral College has spoken. So today I want to congratulate President-elect Joe Biden."
Other Senate Republicans have been less equivocal in acknowledging the reality that Trump lost, with some still refusing to say that Biden won.
But forcing a vote would put Senate Republicans on record about whether they agree with tossing out the results from a free and fair election over baseless allegations of fraud. It could inspire primary challenges for Senate Republicans, who are defending the majority of seats up in 2022.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.