Brunswick Beacon, 09.01.22
The Jan. 6 Committee investigation shows that Trump was involved in a systematic, illegal effort to overturn the 2020 election with help from some Republican congressmen. How involved were Budd and Rouzer?
On Dec. 1, 2020, Attorney General Barr told Trump the election wasn’t stolen. Trump replaced Barr with Jeffrey Rosen, who he called nearly every day badgering him to do something about the election. When Rosen refused to intervene, Trump said “Just say the election was corrupt and leave the rest to me and the Republican Congressmen.”
Budd and Rouzer were among the 126 Republican congressmen who signed a brief supporting Texas’ lawsuit challenging electoral votes of states Trump lost. On December 11, the Supreme Court denied the request, saying Texas had no right to determine “the manner in which another State conducts its elections.”
Once the Supreme Court ruled, that should have settled the matter. But Budd and Rouzer didn’t stop. Budd, on December 22, 2020, and Rouzer, on January 4, 2021, issued statements pledging to object to counting those electoral votes on Jan. 6. That day, after the attackers were cleared from the Capitol, Budd and Rouzer tried to block certification. First, they voted to reject Arizona’s electors. Then, they voted to reject Pennsylvania’s. Because the courts had already spoken, those votes were unjustifiable. Recently disclosed emails make the motivation behind them even more troubling.
Boris Epshteyn worked on Trump’s bogus elector scheme. Jack Wilenchik organized Arizona’s pro-Trump electors. On Dec. 8, 2020, Wilenchik emailed Epshteyn, summarizing the scheme like this: “We would just be sending in fake electoral votes to Pence so that someone in Congress can make an objection when they start counting votes, and start arguing that the fake votes should be counted.”
When Budd and Rouzer followed Wilenchik’s script, were they dupes or willing participants in a scheme to count ‘fake’ electoral votes?