No matter how much they deny it, Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz helped to instigate the attack on our Capitol on January 6. Seven Democrats filed a complaint against them in response, and Politico reported that the Senate Ethics Committee will undertake an investigation. Good. Both Hawley and Cruz knew that the claims of election fraud were nonsensical, yet both used the opportunity to fundraise and moved forth with their objections to the 2020 election results even after the violent insurrection. They need to be held accountable.
Hawley’s fundraiser email claimed that his objections to the election were “not about me.” He knew his objection to the results supported a conspiracy-based lie; it was absolutely about him and his political goals. Similarly, Cruz’s email informed voters of his intent to “lead the fight to reject electors from key states unless there is an emergency audit of the election results.” Both Cruz and Hawley knew full well that they had no chance of throwing out millions of votes—votes that were not even cast in their own districts—and they further knew the claims of fraud were lies. As the Independent reported earlier in January, rioters breached the Capitol mere moments after these emails went out. Republican Senator Tom Cotton condemned both senators on Fox News, stating that Hawley and Cruz were merely “giving false hope to their supporters” for a political advantage. Cotton further pointed out that while these senators knew that votes would never be thrown out, “these senators, as insurrectionists literally stormed the Capitol, were sending out fundraising emails.” This behavior is despicable and disgusting, leading to a complaint to the Ethics Committee.
As Politico reported, we will not know what happens in the Ethics Committee investigation as they tend to do things in private, with Politico referring to the committee as “one of the most secretive committees in Congress.” Hawley, problem child that he is, filed a counter complaint, claiming “improper conduct for partisan gain.” This is the pot calling the kettle black. Hawley walked by the mob, raising his fist in solidarity with them, and then began sending out fundraising emails, all for selfish gain. The committee is led by Chris Coons, who called for both Hawley and Cruz to resign, and James Lankford, who Politico reported had plans to challenge the election results himself prior to the Capitol insurrection. Both men assured Politico that they intend to “keep a tight lid” on the investigations. Hopefully, these two will do the right thing. Coons will, but the jury is still out for Lankford, especially when you consider he too wanted to challenge legally cast and counted votes of millions of people.
Hawley and Cruz are almost comical when they cry “partisan politics.” That is their modus operandi. A wise man once said: “be careful where you point your finger. You’re pointing three back at yourself.” This investigation is about accountability and repercussions for bad acts. If the committee faithfully conducts its investigation and duties, fault will fall where it belongs, and these two will be punished.
Shirley is a former entertainment writer and has worked in the legal field for over 25 years