Congress early today completed action on certifying Joe Biden’s victory in the Electoral College, but only after assaults on democracy by Republicans objecting to  votes in two states. The foes of the democratic process included 138 members of the House, among them U.S. Rep. Rick Crawford.


By the end of the day only a single member of the Arkansas congressional delegation had included Donald Trump’s failure in otherwise anodyne remarks condemning the mob violence at the Capitol. It was, of all people, U.S. Sen. Tom Cotton, right for once.

Anybody who failed to include Trump in their statements (or in newspaper headlines about the day of infamy, as below) failed to lay blame where it belonged or to tell the whole story.


There were several courses of action yesterday.


The proper course: Defend the conduct of American elections and say clearly that Joe Biden won. Condemn members of Congress attempting to deal the Electoral College vote. Condemn violence and blame Donald Trump for inciting the lawless mob. No Arkansas politician passed that test with flying colors. But after issuing statements condemning the mob, Cotton later in the day came closest:

“It’s past time for the president to accept the results of the election, quit misleading the American people, and repudiate mob violence,” Cotton said in a statement Wednesday evening.

“And the senators and representatives who fanned the flames by encouraging the president and leading their supporters to believe that their objections could reverse the election results should withdraw those objections.”

Rep. Bruce Westerman, who’d joined the unfounded lawsuit attempting to undo the Electoral College vote along with Attorney General Leslie Rutledge, ultimately didn’t join the 138 Republicans objecting to counting votes in Pennsylvania (and a somewhat smaller number objecting to Arizona votes). He had flunked the citizenship test already by encouraging the mob that rioted yesterday through the lawsuit and refusing to say before yesterday how he would vote.

Flunking by enabling Trump for four years and doing no more than condemning violence yesterday were many other Arkansas politicians, including would-be governor Tim Griffin, Governor Hutchinson, Sen. John Boozman and Rep. Steve Womack. U.S. Rep. French Hill earned a special place on the day of infamy. First he chose DURING the riot to issue a statement on Twitter calling for a commission to look into election irregularities. He thus lent comfort to suspicion about the election outcome while criminals were rampaging in the Capitol. In a TV interview later, he could muster no more than “sore losers” to describe the mob, as if they were unhappy fans of a losing football team. They were criminals and should be described as such. This group at least said they were willing to accept the Electoral College outcome, though occasionally huffing and puffing about unfounded election concerns.

Hall of Shamers were would-be governors Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. They were utterly silent. No condemnation of the rioters were heard from them, much less of their beloved Donald Trump. They refused comment to press inquiries.


Might Sanders and Huckabee be moved to criticize the man from Gravette who did pro-Trump Arkansas proud by stealing items from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office and bragging about it on camera. May his future home, for a number of years, be a federal prison cell. He also should be made to repay his payroll protection loan of nearly $10,000.

Arkansas flunked its civics test by electing Trump in the first place in 2016 and increasing its support of him this year. Flunking, too, were those who didn’t see yesterday’s events as the natural outcome of Trump’s behavior. Interesting would be a poll on whether the Trump voters regret it. I fear the result.

Oh, and one more blue ribbon for an Arkansas politician, Sen. Jim Hendren, who’s entertaining a run for governor. He was full-throated on the right side yesterday. But deserves a separate post of his own