Report: 13 Texas GOP congressional candidates say Biden won

February 17, 2022 GMT

HOUSTON (AP) — Only 13 of the 143 Texas Republican candidates for Congress say they believe Democrat Joe Biden’s election as president was legitimate, according to a newspaper report Wednesday.

Hearst Newspapers sent questions about the election and searched campaign websites and social media pages of the 143 Republicans running for Congress in Texas.

Of 86 with discernible positions, at least 42 have outright said Democrats stole the 2020 election, called the results illegitimate, or said they would have voted not to certify. Another 11 candidates have said there was enough fraud or irregularities to cast doubt on the election results, although nonpartisan investigations show voter fraud is exceedingly rare.

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“We’ve seen across the board, the Democrats have always cheated,” said Jonathan Hullihan said at a recent candidate forum in the Trump-friendly 8th Congressional District, which includes northern Houston suburbs. Rep. Kevin Brady — who has been in Congress for a quarter century — announced last year he wouldn’t seek reelection for the 8th District.

Hullinan, a former Navy judge advocate general and one of 11 Republicans running for the district’s House seat, said, “81 million votes for Joe Biden? I just don’t believe it.”

Early voting in the state’s March 1 primaries opened Monday. Texas is among at least 18 states holding elections this year with heightened restrictions — an outgrowth of former president Trump’s repeated baseless claims that Democrats stole the 2020 election. Republicans have rejected Democrats’ protests that the changes would disenfranchise voters, particularly minorities.

Four of the five Texas Republicans up for reelection who voted to certify the 2020 election results have drawn primary challenges. Rep. Dan Crenshaw, who has drawn three primary challengers, has told GOP activists they were “kidding themselves” if they think the 2020 election was stolen.

“My duty as a congressman will be to not just vote conservatively, but to do what I can to kick over the anthill, and fix what happened in 2020, as ugly as it might be,” said Milam Langella, one of Crenshaw’s challengers.