Peters, Johnson trade sharp remarks at election hearing in Washington




  • In Politics
  • 2020-12-16 19:45:02Z
  • By USA TODAY
 

U.S. Sens. Gary Peters, D-Mich., and Ron Johnson, R-Wis., traded verbal blows Wednesday at a hearing on election irregularities with Johnson shouting at Peters and calling him a liar over an issue involving President-elect Joe Biden's son, Hunter.

Johnson is the the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Peters is the committee's top ranking Democrat.

As the hearing got underway, Johnson said it was important for the Senate to consider evidence of irregularities in the 2020 election, despite the fact that there has not been any evidence of widespread problems. Peters made clear that courts and other officials have rejected claims that irregularities could or should lead to decertifying results.

President Donald Trump and his allies have tried to attack the results showing he lost to President-elect Joe Biden in Michigan and a handful of other states, but legal efforts to overturn the results - including an unprecedented request from Texas' attorney general to throw out results from Michigan and some other states - have been rebuffed.

More: Fact check: Yes, Hunter Biden is under federal investigation over taxes

More: Trump tweet wrongly suggests there were defects with Michigan voting machines

At one point in the hearing, Peters questioned Chris Krebs, the former head of election security for President Donald Trump, about Russian disinformation attempts in the 2016 election and if Russia and other foreign adversaries were able now to take "advantage of false claims of broad election fraud … where none exist."

Johnson, when Peters' comment ended, said it was "galling" to hear Peters talk about Russian disinformation when Peters and others had falsely accused him and U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, of "accepting and disseminating Russian disinformation" in an investigation into Biden's son Hunter which concluded "millions of dollars in questionable financial transactions."

His voice rising, Johnson said recent reports that Hunter Biden is under federal investigation over his taxes - though little more than that fact has been made public - proves they were right about Hunter Biden and he couldn't sit by and listen to "the lies, the false allegations" put out by Democrats.

Peters responded by saying he had "nothing to do" with any report leaked to the press as claimed by Johnson, though he did, along with U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., release a report in September that called Johnson and Grassley's Hunter Biden investigation "faulty" and "rooted in a known Russian disinformation effort."

Interrupting him and jabbing his finger in the air, Johnson shouted at Peters, "You lied repeatedly in the press that I was spreading Russian disinformation and that was an outright lie and I told you to stop lying and you continued to do it."

Peters responded by saying, "Mr. Chairman, this is not about airing your grievances. I don't know what rabbit hole you're running down."

Peters also charged that Johnson has injected partisanship into committee matters where it doesn't belong. "This is terrible what you're doing to this committee."

Johnson, ignoring him, called on another member to ask a question as Peters threw his hands up in frustration.

Contact Todd Spangler at tspangler@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @tsspangler. Read more on Michigan politics and sign up for our elections newsletter.

This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Gary Peters, Ron Johnson trade verbal blows at election security hearing

COMMENTS

More Related News

Biden eyes ex-Obama staff to tackle Big Tech and other antitrust issues
Biden eyes ex-Obama staff to tackle Big Tech and other antitrust issues

Two former Obama administration officials have emerged as front-runners for the top antitrust job at the U.S. Department of Justice under the incoming...

Fact check: Image of Lauren Boebert at rally is from 2019, unrelated to U.S. Capitol riot
Fact check: Image of Lauren Boebert at rally is from 2019, unrelated to U.S. Capitol riot

Since the riot, social media users have accused Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo., of giving U.S. Capitol tours to those involved. That is false.

Kamala Harris, the first female, Black, and Asian American vice president-elect, will be sworn in by Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina Supreme Court justice
Kamala Harris, the first female, Black, and Asian American vice president-elect, will be sworn in by Sonia Sotomayor, the first Latina Supreme Court justice

The swearing in ceremony for Harris is set for Inauguration Day, January 20, when Biden will also be sworn in as America's 46th president.

Biden to prioritize legal status for millions of immigrants
Biden to prioritize legal status for millions of immigrants
  • World
  • 2021-01-17 01:16:18Z

President-elect Joe Biden's decision to immediately ask Congress to offer legal status to an estimated 11 million people in the country has surprised...

From Baked Alaska to a guy with horns: notable riot arrests
From Baked Alaska to a guy with horns: notable riot arrests
  • US
  • 2021-01-17 01:12:55Z

More than 125 people have been arrested so far on charges related to the violent insurrection led by supporters of President Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Comments

Top News: Politics