Right-wing leaders who have promoted former President Donald Trump’s stolen-election lies and supported new voting restrictions based on those lies are predictably unhappy about President Joe Biden’s renewed push for passage of federal voting rights protections.
One day after Biden called for senators to change filibuster rules to overcome the Senate Republicans’ blockade against voting rights legislation, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee appealed to religious-right activists via email to make a monthly commitment to My Faith Votes, a Christian-right turnout operation for which he serves as honorary chairman.
Huckabee claimed that the “effort to kill the filibuster and federalize elections” is “a blatant attempt to abuse power.” He said that while My Faith Votes recruits and plans to mobilize “an army of Christian voters for 2022,” the group “must also flex our grassroots muscle to keep the Senate from making a very dangerous mistake.” My Faith Votes has backed recent Republican voter suppression efforts in the name of “election integrity.”
After the 2020 presidential election, Huckabee promoted Trump’s false claims about election fraud. On Nov. 5, 2020, he published a blog post under the headline “The Art of the Steal” in which he promoted multiple election conspiracies being circulated by Trump supporters. A month later, as My Faith Votes geared up for the runoff races that were eventually won by Georgia’s Democratic Sens. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff, Huckabee claimed that there were serious “unanswered questions” about the outcome of the Nov. 3 election in the state—and he continued to cast doubt on Biden’s victory months later.
The Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins—who promoted Trump’s false claim to have won the 2020 election—similarly denounced the effort by Biden and Senate leaders as a “federal takeover of elections” that would put Democrats “one step close to a one-party system that controls the states and every lever of government.” A month after the 2020 election, Perkins had urged state legislators in battleground states won by Biden to simply assert their power to name pro-Trump electors.
Former Reagan administration official and longtime religious-right activist Gary Bauer, who, like Perkins, claimed a month after the 2020 election that Trump was the “lawful winner,” claimed in his daily email newsletter Wednesday that the “idea that minority Americans are disenfranchised is a hoax on the same level as the Russian collusion hoax!”
FreedomWorks President Adam Brandon claimed in a Wednesday afternoon email that Democrats “want to make it easier for them to cheat” and “RIG our entire election system in their favor.” FreedomWorks had helped organize right-wing protests in battleground states during vote counting for the 2020 presidential race.