Conservative pundit Alice Stewart and Democratic strategist Maria Cardona debated the election bill that Republicans have refused to support even though Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) helped draft and negotiate it.
Stewart attacked the bill saying that it federalizes the election system that has long been run by the states. Still, Cardona cited the far-right Republicans who aim to bypass voters altogether.
"There are rational Republicans out there that believe we do have free and fair elections with and they do believe that Jan. 6th should not have happened and we should have certified election results," said Stewart. "And they do not want to have this be the topic of conversation and there are rational Republicans that say that Jan. 6th is not what we need to be focusing on as we head into the midterms, especially with all that's going on with the Biden administration.
Cardona cut in to ask what she means by "rational Republicans," but Stewart refused to cite who exactly those Republicans are in the contemporary GOP.
"These are Republicans, as I said, that do believe that we have free and fair elections. The more we even question if we should question our electoral process, that's an affront to our democracy," said Stewart, who dismissed the idea that there should still be a focus on accountability for Jan. 6 and preventing another attack. "And we do not even need to be having these conversations in the first place. And there are a large majority of Republicans who are focusing on reassuring people that we need to go out and vote. We do have free and fair elections, and that's what conservatives are doing."
Cardona noted that while there might be an overwhelming majority of Republicans who believe Joe Biden won the 2020 election, they're not the ones in control of the GOP anymore. In fact, few of those are even in office or they're about to be replaced or retire.
"Donald Trump is the reason why this democracy is hanging by a thread," said Cardona while Stewart tried to talk over her. "And the more -- the more -- hang on, the more that Republicans -- you say there are rational Republicans out there, focused on talking about how the election was fair, there are not enough of them."
"Let me just say this, with all due respect to my friend, Maria here, we are not in peril," said Stewart."Our democracy is not in peril. We need to reassure Americans that our election process is free and fair. And the last thing we need to do is light our hair on fire about democracy in peril and federalize our elections, which is exactly what you and our Democratic friends want to do."
Cardona insisted that the elections do need to be federalized because states have made it clear that they can't handle operating a free and fair election.
Stewart explained that there were many Republican officials who fought back against President Donald Trump's demands to overthrow the voters' choice in the election. The problem, Cardona explained, is that those Republicans willing to risk their career to do the right thing are about to be kicked out of office by the Republican Party that Stewart claims is still "rational."
"All of these states have candidates, Alice, who have said, if they would have been in power, they would not have certified this election," Cardona explained. "What happens if all of those people win in 2022 and 2024? What if all of those rational, common sense, thank goodness, Republicans in the 2020 election did not come forward and stand up against the Donald Trump and the Steve Bannons and the Rudy Giulianis. What if they had said, 'Right, this election is not free. I'm not going to certify it.' That is how close we came to losing our democracy. Our democracy is in peril. And it is in peril because people like Donald Trump and people like Steve Bannon and people like Chuck Grassley, who just stood up next to Donald Trump, without the backbone to say what this man is doing is dangerous. We have way too many Republicans that are hell-bent on standing next to Donald Trump, because they are so afraid of not doing that, that that continues to put our democracy in peril."
See the video below:
There are rational Republicans in power? Ok, name them. www.youtube.com