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Texas Republican Party passes resolution denying legitimacy of Biden's victory in presidential election

Texas GOP Convention embraces far-right platform
Texas GOP Convention embraces far-right platform 06:02

The Texas Republican Party officially rejected the results of the 2020 presidential election over the weekend, passing a resolution in its platform that falsely blames election fraud in five battleground states for President Joe Biden's victory over former President Donald Trump. The resolution refers to Mr. Biden as "acting" president.

"We reject the certified results of the 2020 Presidential election, and we hold that acting President Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. was not legitimately elected by the people of the United States," the resolution reads. It claims that the elections in five states violated Articles 1 and 2 of the Constitution because "various secretaries of state illegally circumvented their state legislatures in conducting their elections in multiple ways, including by allowing ballots to be received after November 3, 2020." 

Reviews of the vote tallies and various recounts did not change the outcome of any state's election. Officials including Trump's Attorney General William Barr have repeatedly rejected claims that there was widespread election fraud. The former president and his allies waged dozens of unsuccessful legal battles to try and deliver Mr. Trump a second term in the White House after Mr. Biden was declared the winner, including multiple rejected appeals to the Supreme Court. Despite this, Mr. Trump persists in his false election fraud claims. His actions are currently under scrutiny from a House select committee tasked with investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol and related efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

Texas Republicans also passed a number of other far-right resolutions in the platform, demonstrating the most conservative activists' strength in the state party. The platform calls for the complete abolition of abortion, prohibiting "the teaching of sex education, sexual health, or sexual choice or identity in any public school in any grade whatsoever," and refers to homosexuality as "an abnormal lifestyle choice." The platform also calls for Obergefell v. Hodges, the 2015 Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide, to be overturned.

The platform notes that "Texas retains the right to secede from the United States." One resolution called for a referendum "in the 2023 general election for the people of Texas to determine whether or not the State of Texas should reassert its status as an independent nation," the platform reads. Another called for the United States to withdraw from the United Nations.

Convention attendees also codified their opposition to the bipartisan gun bill that's being negotiated and rebuked the state's own Republican Senator John Cornyn for his work on the bill. When Cornyn addressed the convention, he was met with loud boos. The senior senator defended the framework of the gun control legislation, declaring, "I will not under any circumstance support new restrictions for law-abiding gun owners. That will always be my red line. And despite what some of you may have heard, the framework that we are working on is consistent with that red line." 

He also pointed out the measures he has fought against in the legislation: "Democrats push for an assault weapons ban. I said no. They tried to get a new three-week mandatory waiting period for all gun purchases. I said no. Universal background checks. Magazine bans; licensing requirements. The list goes on and on and on. And I said no, no, 1000 times no!"

The gun debate in Congress comes after a wave of mass shootings across the country, including one in Uvalde, Texas that left 19 students and two teachers dead. That shooting came just 10 days after a racially motivated mass shooting in Buffalo, where 10 Black people were killed in a grocery store.

In their resolution, the Texas Republicans inveighed against potential age restrictions, stating without citing any evidence that "those under 21 are most likely to be victims of violent crime and thus most likely to need to defend themselves." The resolution also said "red-flag" laws violate citizens' due process, and "all gun control is a violation of the Second Amendment and our God given rights."

Though supportive of the Second Amendment, the platform calls for other amendments to be eliminated. One portion of the platform calls for the repeal of the Seventeenth Amendment, which allows citizens to vote for senators rather than have them be appointed by state legislatures. Another calls for the federal income tax, established in the Sixteenth Amendment, to be eliminated. Constitutional amendments require two-thirds of each chamber of Congress, or two-thirds of states, to be proposed, as well as three-fourths of state legislatures for ratification.

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