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Monday, December 09, 2019

Cruz Threatens To Hold Up Biden Nominees Until Trump Concedes


Sen. Ted Cruz

Photo by Gage Skidmore/ CC BY-SA 2.0

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) plans to obstruct every one of President-elect Joe Biden's Cabinet confirmations unless Donald Trump concedes.

Trump, of course, has vowed never to do so.

"As long as there's litigation ongoing, and the election result is disputed, I do not think you will see the Senate act to confirm any nominee," Cruz said in an Axios interview on Wednesday.

Cruz and his fellow Republicans will control the Senate until at least Inauguration Day. If Democrats win two runoffs in Georgia on Jan. 5, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would break a 50-50 tie, giving her party a slim majority.

Other Senate Republicans have also reportedly indicated that they hope to obstruct some or all of Biden's appointees. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell reportedly would only allow votes on picks he deems acceptable. Homeland Security and Government Affairs chair Ron Johnson (WI) also suggested to Axios this week that until "some pretty troubling irregularities" about the 2020 election are explained, he might also try to block confirmations.

A Cruz spokesperson did not immediately respond to an inquiry for this story. But his suggestion that his caucus would stop Biden from assembling a team until the election is no longer disputed could mean an indefinite delay.

To date, Trump and his supporters have filed and lost dozens of legal challenges to his election defeat. Though they have baselessly alleged fraud or cheating, their allegations have been refuted by media fact-checkers, election officials from both parties, and judges — even some appointed by Trump.

While his viable legal avenues to challenge the election have largely been exhausted, Trump could continue to file bogus legal challenges for the next four years.

And on Nov. 23, Trump made it clear that he never intends to stop disputing his defeat. "Will never concede to fake ballots [...]," he tweeted.

On Wednesday, Trump spent most of a White House Hanukkah celebration lying about the election results and claiming he was "going to win."

Regardless of whether Trump and Cruz accept the results, Biden will be inaugurated in 40 days. In order to hit the ground running to address the pandemic, massive unemployment, racial divisions, and other challenges, he will need a Cabinet — and fast.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.


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