GOP Congressman Apologizes For Following The Trump Cult

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Rep. Tom Rice (R-S.C.) has become the first Congressional Republican to announce that they regret voting against the full certification of Joe Biden’s presidential election victory earlier this year. Those certification proceedings, of course, were completed by Congress after the attack on the Capitol in January by Trump’s supporters — and it’s those proceedings that the rioters were targeting. Rice told journalist Olivia Beavers that he still holds that there were “real issues with the election,” but as Beavers summarized things, Rice’s “contrition comes from Trump’s failure to intervene when a mob of his own supporters stormed the Capitol in order to try to stop the certification.”

Rice explained as follows:

‘In retrospect I should have voted to certify… Because President Trump was responsible for the attack on the Capitol… In the wee hours of that disgraceful night, while waiting for the Capitol of our great country to be secured, I knew I should vote to certify. But because I had made a public announcement of my intent to object, I did not want to go back on my word. So yeah, I regret my vote to object… There was a coward in that [day’s] equation. But it wasn’t Mike Pence.’

Rice is one of ten House Republicans who eventually supported the impeachment of Trump on a charge of incitement of insurrection following the Capitol violence. He’s the only one of those ten House Republicans to have also voted against the full certification of Biden’s victory. Those who backed the impeachment have faced steep criticism from Trump allies in the GOP — and two of the impeachment’s GOP supporters, including Reps. Adam Kinzinger (Ill.) and Anthony Gonzalez (Ohio), have announced that they’re not seeking re-election, but Rice is hoping to be re-elected. It’s remarkable that after all this time — and after all these revelations about the seriousness of the attack on the Capitol and the threats to democracy that it represented — Rice is the only one of the scores of Republicans in Congress who voted against confirming Biden’s win to reveal regrets.