Fox News isn’t all bad. On one hand they let Tucker Carlson spew all manner of nonsense — racist conspiracy theories, lies about the 2020 election, defenses of the failed but fatal insurrection of Jan. 6. Then again, they do have Chris Wallace, one of their only employees who dares deviate from the Republican line. He stood up to Trump himself, so naturally he wasn’t afraid to let a lowly GOP congressman have it.
CHRIS WALLACE: Is Joe Biden the legitimate POTUS?
JIM BANKS: Yes, Joe Biden was elected. He was inaugurated.
WALLACE: Do you still question whether Biden won the election fair and square?
BANKS: I stand by my vote to object to the election results on January 6. pic.twitter.com/d3loRlaqzp
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) May 9, 2021
That lawmaker was Indiana representative Jim Banks, one of the key figures in the House who’ve called for Liz Cheney’s ouster because she doesn’t buy Trump’s lies. On Matthews’ show on Sunday, Banks tried to defend his attempt to remove from her position of power, claiming her continued criticism of the disgraced former president had become “an unwelcome distraction,” and that she’s failed to unite the party in trying to take back Congress in 2022.
But Matthews wasn’t buying it . He decided to ask him something point-blank: Does he believe Joe Biden legitimately won the presidency? Like many in the GOP who believe what he does, Banks tried to dodge the question.
“Yes, Joe Biden was elected. He was inaugurated on January 20,” Banks replied, dancing around the question.
But Wallace kept pressing, asking him, “Do you still question whether or not Joe Biden won the election fair and square and got over 270 electoral votes, fair and square?”
“I stand by my vote to object on January 6 and stand by the Texas lawsuit. I have serious concerns about how the election in November was carried out,” Banks told Matthews. “That is where most Republicans in the GOP conference are unified around that single mission and goal and anything that distracts from it will hold us back from doing that.”
That wasn’t good enough for Wallace. “I’m just asking a question,” he told Banks. “Liz Cheney is saying it’s a big lie to say the election was stolen. Liz Cheney is saying that, in fact, Donald Trump contributed to the riot. I’m asking you for your opinion on those issues. Is it a lie that the election was stolen? Did he contribute to the insurrection on the Capitol?”
Banks then claimed he’d “never said the election was stolen,” but also tried to say he had “very serious concerns with how the election was conducted last November.”
Wallace tried one last time to get a straight answer. “When Liz Cheney says history’s watching and you upon can’t go forward until you resolve this question—the election was fair and square, Donald Trump played a negative role—you think she’s misguided making those points?” he asked.
Banks finally gave Matthews a (mostly) straight answer, saying he’s called on Cheney to “rejoin the Republican team and help us go out and win a majority in the midterm election.” He still never took a stance on whether he thought the election as legitimate — which a large number of Republicans, bolstered by others on the same network as Matthews, do not.
(Via The Daily Beast)