Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) grew increasingly agitated and testy on Sunday morning when ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos repeatedly pressed him to acknowledge that the 2020 presidential election wasn’t stolen—something Paul refused to do.
Stephanopoulos immediately kicked off Sunday’s This Week interview with Paul by asking him a “threshold” question about the results of the election, wondering aloud if he accepted that President Joe Biden’s victory was legitimate and “not stolen,” something former President Donald Trump and his allies have baselessly insisted and which eventually resulted in an insurrectionist riot.
“Well, what I would say is that the debate over whether or not there was fraud should occur, we never had any presentation in court,” the Kentucky lawmaker deflected. “Most of the cases were thrown out for lack of standing, a procedural way of not hearing it.”
As Paul said there was “still a chance” that some cases challenging states’ voting laws or alleging irregularities could make their way to the Supreme Court, the ABC moderator pushed back to point out that Republicans’ election challenges have been laughed out of court.
“I have to stop you there,” Stephanoulous noted. “No election is perfect. But there were 86 challenges filed by President Trump and his allies in court, all were dismissed. Every state certified the results.”
The Republican senator contended that the majority of Republican voters believe that “we do need to look at election integrity,” prompting Stephanopoulos to claim that those voters agree with Paul “because they were fed a ‘big lie’ by President Trump and his supporters.”
Cornered on the issue, and still refusing to admit that the election was not “stolen,” Paul then framed the argument as a partisan and ideological issue, complaining that “people coming from the liberal side” immediately “say everything’s a lie instead of saying there’s two sides to everything.”
Stephanopoulos, meanwhile, again explained that Trump falsely claimed the “election was stolen” when, in fact, it wasn’t. Furthermore, as the ABC host stated, Trump’s own attorney general and Department of Justice found no evidence of widespread voter fraud that would impact the election’s results.
“I won’t be cowed by liberals in the media who say ‘there’s no evidence here and you’re a liar if you talk about election fraud.’ Let’s have an open debate this is a free country,” Paul grumbled in response.
The Trump-boosting senator went on to dismiss former Attorney General William Barr’s declaration about the lack of evidence of voter fraud, claiming it was just a “pronouncement.” From there, he complained that the media is unfair to Republicans and says they are “all liars.”
“There are two sides to every story,” he blared.
“Sir, there are not two sides to this story. This has been looked in every single state,” Stephanopoulos shot back.
“There are two sides to every story,” Paul wailed. “George, you’re forgetting who you are as a journalist if you think there’s only one side. You’re inserting yourself into the story to say I’m a liar!”
“There are not two sides to facts,” the ABC anchor retorted.
Stephanopoulos would then circle back to the original question about whether Paul felt the election was stolen or not, something Paul still refused to answer.
“I think there was great deal of evidence of fraud and changing of the election laws illegally,” he asserted. “A thorough investigation is warranted.”