Dec 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Rep. Paul Mitchell says he's leaving the GOP

Rep. Paul Mitchell wearing a suit and tie and black glasses

Rep. Paul Mitchell in D.C. in 2018. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

Rep. Paul Mitchell, who is retiring at the end of this Congress, is leaving the Republican Party due to President Trump's efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

The big picture: Mitchell was one of roughly two dozen GOP representatives who broke ranks with Trump to acknowledge President-elect Biden's win.

  • CNN first reported that Mitchell would quit the GOP.

What they're saying: "... [T]he president and his legal team have failed to provide substantive evidence of fraud or administrative failure on a scale large enough to impact the outcome of the election," Mitchell wrote in a letter to House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy and Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel.

  • "It is unacceptable for political candidates to treat our election system as though we are a third-world nation and incite distrust of something so basic as the sanctity of our vote."
  • "If Republican leaders collectively sit back and tolerate unfounded conspiracy theories and 'stop the steal' rallies without speaking out for our electoral process, which the Department of Homeland Security said was 'the most secure in American history,' our nation will be damaged," he writes.

Justin Amash (I-Mich.), who left the Republican Party last year after publicly supporting impeachment, thanked Mitchell for leaving the GOP via Twitter.

  • Mitchell has told the House clerk to change his party to "Independent" for the remainder of his time in Congress
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