MSNBC conservatives trash Josh Hawley for ‘trying to out-Cruz Ted Cruz’ with terrible votes
Josh Hawley, R- Mo., asks questions during a Senate Homeland Security& Governmental Affairs Committee hearing to discuss election security and the 2020 election process on Dec. 16. - Nash Greg/TNS

A pair of conservative commentators on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" trashed Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) for being the lone holdout against an anti-Asian hate crimes bill.

The bill passed 94-1 in a rare moment of bipartisan unity, and conservative Matt Lewis ripped the Missouri Republican's vote against the bill, which comes in the wake of a spike in violence and harassment against Asian-Americans since the coronavirus pandemic began.

"To put it in context, Ted Cruz thought this was a good idea, was persuaded to, ultimately, with amendments," Lewis said. "Tom Cotton thought this was worth voting for, so these are pretty conservative Republicans who voted for it. Josh Hawley did not, and I think this has more to do with the fact that he is staking out, as kind of one man, nobody to the right of me turf, and this is not the first time we've seen this happen in the case of some confirmations, where Josh Hawley is just staking out this pretty extreme territory, and I guess the bet is that when he runs for president in 2024, one of these issues will be potent and he'll invoke it, probably in a debate against Ted Cruz. But, yeah, he is a very lonely voice this morning."

Elise Jordan, a former White House and State Department aide in the Bush administration, agreed.

"I want to second what Matt said about Josh Hawley going out of his way to really out-Cruz Ted Cruz, which is quite something," she said, "and you have to really work hard to try to be more loathe than Ted cruz, but Josh Hawley seems to have decided that is his way and his glide path to the Republican nomination."

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