Representative Dan Crenshaw (R., Texas) on Thursday criticized fellow Republicans for “lying to millions” of people about the significance of Wednesday’s electoral vote count, which was delayed for hours after Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol during the proceedings.
In an appearance on Fox News, Crenshaw said that while he disagreed with Senators Ted Cruz (R., Texas) and Josh Hawley (R., Mo.) “in a fundamental way about the constitutionality of this process … and the ability of Congress to overturn any electoral votes,” period, that the pair were not to blame for the rioting that erupted on Wednesday.
“Let’s be very honest. Senator Cruz and Senator Hawley were not hyping up January 6th. They were not calling for people to fight in the streets. They were not saying this is the last stand. That being said, many members of Congress did do that. Many commentators did do that. Many in the media have been doing that, for the last few weeks, saying constantly [that] this is our time to fight,” he said.
“They’ve been lying to people, lying to millions,” Crenshaw added. “They’ve been lying that January 6th was going to be this big solution for election integrity, and it was never going to be. It was never going to solve anything and it was always unconstitutional.”
The former Navy SEAL also told the Houston Chronicle on Thursday that he believes “people have been lied to en masse by the millions.”
“In the sense that they were led to believe Jan. 6 was anything but a political performance for a few opportunistic politicians to give a five-minute speech. That is all that it ever was,” he said. “People were lied to.”
On Wednesday, as lawmakers met to tally the Electoral College votes that ultimately affirmed President-elect Joe Biden’s victory, lawmakers and staffers were forced to evacuate or find shelter in barricaded rooms and underneath desks as a pro-Trump mob broke into the building.
The proceedings were delayed but ultimately resumed Wednesday night, ending with the eventual confirmation of Biden’s victory.
Crenshaw told the Houston Chronicle that while he shared some of his GOP colleagues’ disapproval of how some states had carried out their elections, that Congress never had the authority to overturn the elections and lawmakers had given Trump supporters false hope.
He made an emotional plea to voters on Fox News saying the path forward would be to come together and make changes at the state-level.
“I know that I’m not going to lie to you,” he told viewers. “I’m going to tell you where we have to do the hard work and we have to change these laws at the state level because these laws are loose. They don’t give people confidence.”
“We hear you,” he said, “but we have to come together and work at the state level and change these things.”