3 minute read

U.S. Senator James Lankford is a foot soldier in the attempted coup by allegedly outgoing President Donald Trump. 

By not acknowledging that Trump lost and President-elect Joe Biden won, he is fostering the lies that Trumpworld is feeding the 73.6 million voters who supported Trump in the election and thwarting the desperately needed progress toward controlling COVID-19. 

Opinion

Opinion

by George Lang, opinion writer for Free Press

By reneging on a statement made to KRMG in Tulsa that he would ensure Biden receives the daily intelligence briefing accorded to all past presidents-elect, Lankford is helping Trump keep vital material from the White House Coronavirus Task Force from the two people who can act on that data on January 20, 2021. 

“There is no loss from him getting the briefings and to be able to do that and if that’s not occurring by Friday, I will step in as well, and to be able to push and to say this needs to occur so that regardless of the outcome of the election … people can be ready for that actual task,” he told KRMG on Nov. 11. 

“Regardless of the outcome”? He said that four days after all major news outlets called the election for Biden. 

Three days later, Lankford proved that, like Wayne County Board of Canvassers members Monica Palmer and William Hartmann in Michigan, he could be intimidated. 

Lankford rolled over for Trump, telling Newsmax that he is “not in a hurry, necessarily, to get Joe Biden these briefings, it’s been interesting how the media, the national media, not this network, but others have twisted this term ‘step in.’ I happen to chair the committee that oversees GSA, that is the entity that has to be able to make this call.”

Yes, Lankford is chair of the Senate Homeland Security Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management, which does oversee the General Services Administration and its rogue administrator, Emily Murphy. But he is now doing nothing to persuade Murphy to certify the results of the election and fund the transition.  

This allows Trump to continue his assault on reality. While the public receives constant reassurances from members of the media as well as Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, we have seen the effect Trump’s constant lying and subversion of norms have on gullible conservatives. 

Our nation needs unwavering commitment to truth and leaders who will acknowledge that truth. Lankford is not doing this. 

Trump is engaging in sedition right now, attempting to steal Michigan by appealing to the state’s Republican legislature to defraud our democratic processes. Lankford is enabling him. Under title 18 of the U.S. Code, violating sedition laws carries a sentence of 20 years in prison and an appropriate fine.

We are told that all of this — Trump’s unwillingness to concede, Murphy’s refusal to execute her duties as GSA administrator, Rudy Giuliani’s incoherent arguments for throwing out the results of counties and even entire states — is just stagecraft. That might be true, but so was Orson Welles’ Mercury Theatre radio adaptation of H.G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds. Yes, it was fake, but people believed an alien invasion was underway. 

Trump’s grinding attack on this nation must end, and his sniveling toadies must be held accountable for enabling this subversion of what was once gold-standard democracy. Our country cannot survive if nearly half of its voters believe the election was illegitimate, and it cannot survive an unlawful coup by the most deranged, power-mad person to occupy the White House. 

Thanks to Lankford and most other Republican senators, the seeds of doubt are planted. If he exercised his authority over the GSA, Lankford could put this to rest. But he lacks the courage and character to do anything about this national crisis. He is embarrassing Oklahoma, and this is a state that regularly loses its capacity for embarrassment. 

If Lankford were to ensure that intel briefings commence, as he briefly promised, we might have a chance at putting this national nightmare behind us. Because Lankford continually proves he is corrupt and incapable of heroism, Oklahoma must now join the crucial effort to challenge this monument to governmental impotence in 2022. 


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