Webster: Uphold the sanctity of democracy and the will of the voters

Spurred on by their values and ideals, American voters last November cast their ballots to democratically elect the 46th president of the United States.

Leading up to that election, we as a people were repeatedly tested. We faced a global pandemic. Challenges were launched against our collective right to vote. We watched the dismantling of the U.S. Postal Service in the first presidential election with widespread mail-in voting as an option in this commonwealth.

And then we witnessed the 45th president of the United States directly question our democratic process in Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan and across the country, including here in Pennsylvania. There were lawsuits and bizarre news conferences. This culminated with his encouraging an insurgent attack on our country on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C.

These attacks on our democracy continue today. We see it happening in Arizona with its election audit, an entirely unnecessary action being pushed by some in Pennsylvania – led by a state senator who should know better.

Our state’s election was fair and secure. The Republican party’s own election service professionals have made this clear. Audits have already been done through the counties, as prescribed by Pennsylvania law. Broader risk-limiting audits with 63 of our 67 counties participating have already been conducted, a fact known all too well by those who continue to prop up the “Big Lie.”

The results have not and will not change. Again, Pennsylvania’s 2020 presidential election was fair and secure.

But these attacks on our country’s integrity continue for a reason, and I believe that reason is nefarious. The reason is not in keeping with the traditions of our nation or of our commonwealth.

Rather, it is inherently dishonest. The continued attacks on the 2020 election are designed to make Pennsylvanians distrust their government, distrust their county elections and, most importantly, they are designed to create distrust in the next election, well before it even happens.

Ambition to create distrust is not a characteristic of an effective legislator, and it is not the job of a sitting Pennsylvania senator.