Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel on Sunday wouldn’t say definitively whether the GOP would accept the results of the 2022 midterms – not without suggesting there could be reasons to reject the results.
The issue of whether Republicans would traffic in election denialism a la 2020 came up when CNN’s “State of the Union” anchor Dana Bash asked McDaniel about Sen. Ron Johnson’s (R-WI) refusal to commit to accepting his potential defeat.
“Listen, you should have a recount. You should have a canvass. And it’ll go to the courts, and then everybody should accept the results. That’s what it should be,” McDaniel replied.
“But I’m also not going to say if there’s problems, that we shouldn’t be able to address that,” she continued. “If there’s real problems, everyone should be able to address that.”
The GOP chair said that Republicans “want to make sure” the elections are “run fair and transparently.”
“And then we’ll let the process play out, and then we’ll accept the results,” she added.
Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), who serves as the chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, offered similar qualifiers on Sunday when “Meet the Press” anchor Chuck Todd asked him the same question about accepting the election results.
“Absolutely. But what we’re also going to do is do everything we can to make sure they’re free and fair, and if there’s any shenanigans, we are ready to make sure,” the Florida Republican said. “We support our candidates to make sure that these elections are fair and every ballot is counted the right way.”
Far-right Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake, one of the loudest acolytes of ex-President Donald Trump’s Big Lie, flatly refused to say at first if she’d accept a loss in her race.
“I’m going to win the election, and I will accept that result,” Lake told CNN in mid-October.
A few days later, Lake softened her stance a smidge by, like McDaniel, stating she would accept the results “if we have a fair, honest and transparent election.”