The stolen-election crazy train has been driven by some Republicans in Congress. Remember their names because they should be held accountable for the damage they have done to our republic.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris got more votes than Donald Trump and Mike Pence. They got more popular votes and more electoral college votes. Congressional validation is a mere formality.

Wild conspiracy theories about the vote counts, with no evidence of fraud even offered, have been blown into threats of violence and a solution that would completely erase the ultimate authority of the ballot box.

The American people deserve better. We deserve elected leaders who operate in reality. We deserve elected leaders who adhere to their oaths of office to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

What we have is Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., who declared in mid-December that he couldn’t vote to certify the Electoral College results because “normal, reasonable” people in his state felt they had been disenfranchised.

Of course, many of his conservative constituents feel that way. He had been lying to them for his own political purposes.

So have Republicans like Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Steve Daines of Montana, plus at least four Republicans who hadn’t even been sworn in yet. Over the weekend, astonishingly, the sitting vice president of the United States, Mike Pence, jumped on board.

These officeholders don’t believe the election was stolen. They know their attempts to overturn the election will fail. In fact, they’re counting on it. Note that the list is heavily weighted toward 2024 presidential ambitions.

Should normal, reasonable people be wise to these stolen election lies? That’s a big ask when people trying to go about their daily lives are swamped with lies by media outlets, online posts and speeches by a president with a lifetime of experience using the same tactic to get his way.

Americans should have been able to count on their elected leaders to accept reality and say so, unequivocally. They should have heard a simple, consistent message from elected officials who represent their values. Trump lost a fair, secure, well-run election and Biden won.

The Republicans who have been unwilling to protect our American democracy should not be its beneficiary. Voters should hold them accountable for this act of betrayal the next time their names are on the ballot.

“Our View” represents the opinion of the newspaper editorial board, which is made up of members of its board of directors. Remarks may be directed to

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