“I commend Republican election officials across the country who have discharged their duties with integrity over the past two months while weathering relentless pressure, disinformation, and attacks from the president and his campaign,” Toomey said.
The bombshell audio — first obtained by the Washington Post — is just the latest example of how Trump’s long-shot push to remain in power has splintered his own party ahead of two crucial runoff races in Georgia that will determine whether Republicans keep their Senate majority.
GOP Conference Chair Liz Cheney, the No. 3 Republican who frequently calls out the president, said the recording is “deeply troubling” and urged people “to listen to the full hour of it.”
And Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), one of the most vocal Trump critics in recent months, labeled the recorded conversation as “absolutely appalling.”
“To every member of Congress considering objecting to the election results, you cannot — in light of this — do so with a clean conscience,” he tweeted.
News of Trump’s recorded conversation comes as the GOP is preparing for an intraparty showdown on Jan. 6, when Congress is slated to certify the Nov. 3 election results. Dozens of House Republicans, led by Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Ala), and at least 12 Senate Republicans plan to object to Biden’s win, following Trump’s baseless claims of widespread voter fraud.
The president has been relatively quiet about the call to Raffensperger, but on Monday he dubbed those Republicans unwilling to challenge Biden’s electoral win as the “surrender caucus.”
Most of the Republicans who were critical of Trump’s call are the same lawmakers planning to oppose the anti-certification effort. But even some of its supporters acknowledged Trump’s conversation with Raffensperger is doing the GOP no favors.
“One of the things, I think, that everyone has said is that this call was not a helpful call,” said Sen.