ST. LOUIS — Two days before Missouri's junior Senator Josh Hawley planned to challenge the Electoral College results in some states President Trump lost, a fellow Republican and former Missouri Senator John Danforth branded Hawley's maneuvering as a "highly destructive attack on our constitutional government."
Former Senator Danforth made the comments in a statement Monday.
In a Fox News appearance, Senator Hawley continued to say that he will join a group of lawmakers who will object to the certification of electoral results during the joint session of Congress Wednesday, which could force hours of debate but will not change the outcome of the election.
"I have heard from people like I've never heard before over the last month about this election," Hawley said on Fox News. "They have major, major concerns about the integrity, the fairness of this election and they expect me to stand up and raise those concerns..."
"It seems to me Josh Hawley has very successfully in a short time made a name for himself on the national stage, and I think that's intentional," said 5 On Your Side Political Analyst Anita Manion, who also teaches political science at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.
Manion said from $2,000 stimulus checks to questioning the election, Hawley is in step with the President and possibly his supporters which could help if Hawley runs for President in 2024.
"I think a lot of people still see the President and his Twitter account and his followers as possible kingmakers for 2024," said Manion.
But it's 2020 that has a fellow Missouri Republican worried.
Former Senator John Danforth who has supported Hawley's campaigns, released a statement Monday denouncing Hawley's planned objection to the election.
Saying in part:
"Lending credence to Trump's false claim that the election was stolen is a highly destructive attack on our constitutional government. It is the opposite of conservative; it is radical."
Hawley also looks to be raising money on the issue according to his campaign website that that reads, "JOIN ME AND PRESIDENT TRUMP," and "Stand Up for American Election Integrity NOW!" above buttons to donate.
Hawley told Fox News he is not making this stand to help him run for president.
Manion pointed out his campaign ads for Missouri Attorney General in 2016 that accused "career politicians" of "climbing the ladder, using one office to get another."
"And then [Hawley] immediately left to run for Senate," two years later Manion said. "I think that he definitely has higher aspirations."