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'Crackpot Theories': N.J. Gov. Phil Murphy Slams Congressman Jeff Van Drew's Decision To Vote Against Certifying Electoral College Vote

TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) -- New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy did not hold back while speaking out against Republican Congressman Jeff Van Drew and other Republican legislators' decisions to vote against certifying the Electoral College results naming Joe Biden President of the United States. Murphy referred to the election conspiracies as "crackpot" theories in a press conference on Monday afternoon.

"It pains me to see one of our own representatives, @CongressmanJVD, cynically side with conspiracy theorists and throw his fate in with the far-right's disproven and crackpot theories," Murphy tweeted. "If that's the legacy Jeff wants for himself, then, I guess 'it is what it is.'"

New Jersey Rep. Jeff Van Drew, a former-Democrat-turned-Republican, said he would join the effort to object to the election results last month.

"I will be voting against certifying this past November's presidential election – and my vote isn't about who won or lost the Presidency," Van Drew wrote in a Dec. 30 op-ed. "Rather, my vote is a reflection of the litany of serious unanswered questions surrounding this election to which Americans deserve answers. My vote is also a rejection of the status quo and a no confidence vote in the politicians, corporate special interests, and legacy media establishment who continually mock Americans as naïve, stupid, or conspiracy theorists for demanding answers to these important questions."

Murphy also took a shot at President Donald Trump during Monday's press conference.

"Congressional Republicans are openly and unabashedly working to overthrow a free and fair election decided by the American people," Murphy tweeted. "An American President is sitting in the Oval Office, working the phones to subvert American democracy for his personal benefit. Let that sink in."

A number of Republican lawmakers are joining President Donald Trump's extraordinary effort to overturn the election, pledging to reject the results when Congress meets on Jan. 6 to count the Electoral College votes and certify President-elect Joe Biden's win.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas on Saturday announced a coalition of 11 senators and senators-elect who have been enlisted for Trump's effort to subvert the will of American voters.

This follows the declaration from Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri, who was the first to buck Senate leadership by saying he would join with House Republicans in objecting to the state tallies during Wednesday's joint session of Congress.

Trump's refusal to accept his defeat is tearing the party apart as Republicans are forced to make consequential choices that will set the contours of the post-Trump era. Hawley and Cruz are both among potential 2024 presidential contenders.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had urged his party not to try to overturn what nonpartisan election officials have concluded was a free and fair vote.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 


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