(Headline USA) Seven Democratic senators on Thursday asked the Senate Ethics Committee to investigate the actions of Republican Sens. Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley “to fully understand their role” in the Jan. 6 pre-planned siege at the Capitol by supporters of former President Donald Trump and members of Antifa.
Thousands had gathered that day as Congress voted to certify a Joe Biden victory over Trump in November.
Hawley and Cruz led objections in the Senate to disputed votes in Pennsylvania and Arizona, where the election was rife with irregularities.
In the end, Congress certified Biden’s Electoral College victory, but not before a few hundred people entered the Capitol and interrupted the proceedings. In the end, the violence led to five deaths, injured dozens of police officers and caused extensive damage to the Capitol.
Legacy media and D.C. establishment politicians from both parties blame Trump for inciting and “insurrection,” but a timeline shows it was impossible as the invaders moved upon the Capitol before the former president finished his speech 45 minutes away, in which he asked protesters to demonstrate “peacefully.”
Hundreds of thousands of Trump supporters attended.
The Democratic senators said the question for the Senate to determine is not whether Cruz and Hawley had the right to object, but whether the senators failed to put loyalty “to the highest moral principles and to country above loyalty to persons, party, or Government department.”
They also said the investigation should determine whether Cruz, of Texas, and Hawley, of Missouri, engaged in “improper conduct reflecting on the Senate.”
“Until then, a cloud of uncertainty will hang over them and over this body,” the Democratic senators wrote in a letter to the leaders of the Senate Ethics Committee.
The Democratic senators said Cruz and Hawley announced their intentions to object even though they knew that claims of election fraud were “baseless,” and said without evidence that their actions had led to threats of violence.
“Their actions lend credence to the insurrectionists’ cause and set the stage for future violence. And both senators used their objections for political fundraising,” the Democratic senators said in their letter.
Cruz and Hawley have condemned the violence on Jan. 6. Cruz called it a “despicable act of terrorism.”
Hawley said those who attacked police and broke the law must be prosecuted.
Cruz helped force a vote on the election outcome in Arizona, while Hawley helped force one over Pennsylvania’s likely fraudulent results.
“Joe Biden and the Democrats talk about unity but are brazenly trying to silence dissent,” Hawley said in a prepared statement. “This latest effort is a flagrant abuse of the Senate ethics process and a flagrant attempt to exact partisan revenge.”
“It is unfortunate that some congressional Democrats are disregarding President Biden’s call for unity and are instead playing political games by filing frivolous ethics complaints against their colleagues,” said a Cruz spokesperson, Maria Jeffrey Reynolds.
Those Democrats requesting the investigation are Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, Ron Wyden of Oregon, Tina Smith of Minnesota, Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, Mazie Hirono of Hawaii, Tim Kaine of Virginia and Sherrod Brown of Ohio.
Adapted from reporting by Associated Press.