May 9, 2021

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Republican senator calls for ‘spirit of forgiveness’ over Capitol riot and says it’s ‘time to move on’

Republican Senator Roger Marshall of Kansas says he is “just so ready to move on” after supporting GOP attempts to reject election results in an effort to install Donald Trump for a second term.

The senator was asked by CNN’s Pamela Brown on Saturday whether he believes his actions have contributed to the ongoing misinformation campaigns surrounding the election results, including an ongoing audit in Arizona hired by the state’s Republican party.

“Republicans continue to believe in the lie that this election, the last election was stolen,” she said. “You voted to toss out millions of votes in Arizona and Pennsylvania. You also joined the Texas lawsuit attempting to throw out votes cast in four states.”

“We’re just so ready to move on,” the senator said on Saturday. “It’s time for this country to heal. It’s time for a spirit of forgiveness to be happening.”

On 2 January, Mr Marshall joined 10 other Republican senators – citing no evidence – who said that they would reject Electoral College results four days later on grounds of “multiple allegations of serious voter fraud.”

The Trump campaign, his administration, the Justice Department, FBI and bipartisan elections officials across the US have not presented any evidence of widespread election fraud. Mr Trump continues to spread the lie, echoed by his allies, that the election was “stolen” from him.

That conspiracy theory fulled a pro-Trump insurrection at the US Capitol on 6 January as lawmakers convened to certify the results.

A recent CNN poll conducted by SSRS found that 30 per cent of respondents still do not believe Joe Biden is the legitimate winner of the election. Of those respondents, 69 per cent believe there is “solid evidence” that he did not win enough votes.

The poll found that only 23 per cent of Republicans believe Mr Biden legitimately received enough votes for the presidency, with 70 per cent believing he did not.

The poll was carried out 21-26 April with 777 cell phone respondents and 227 people by landline.

Mr Marshall was also asked how Republican values concerning states’ rights and federalism square against widespread GOP calls to toss out millions of ballots in several states. In his response, he claimed GOP-sponsored efforts to restrict voter access in nearly 47 states aims to make voting “harder to cheat”.

Republicans have defended their bills as attempts to increase “voter confidence” and to protect “election integrity” while they are also leading efforts to undermine their results based on no evidence.

“By us standing up to our concerns about those elections, about the election integrity, is forced those states with their problems to come to back to the table and have those legislatures to work together to make sure we have safer elections with higher integrity,” he told CNN.