Arizona Republican Rep. Rusty Bowers blasts Trump-backed candidates who could try to overturn future elections


Rusty Bowers made the comments in an interview with Jake Tapper for an upcoming CNN special, “American Coup: The January 6th Investigation.” The documentary, which details key bombshells from Congress’ detailed investigation into the Jan. 6, 2021, riot at the U.S. Capitol, premieres Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on CNN.
Bowers was a key witness at one of the public hearings this summer of the US House select committee investigating the January 6 riot.

“The Legislature, after the election, can reject the election,” Bowers said in describing the proposal he ordered 12 state House committees to consider, almost guaranteeing it would not get a vote. “And I said, welcome to fascism.”

Overturning or undermining election results is what former President Donald Trump has put pressure on state officials after losing the 2020 election, including in Arizona, where Bowers was applauded by Trump himself. Trump failed in his efforts to overturn the election results, but he and his allies have pushed for new voting laws in key states that give key parties more control over elections.
Bowers’ use of the term “fascism” is notable given the recent Republican backlash from President Joe Biden, who said Trump’s political movement “resembles semi-fascism.”
Last month, Bowers lost the Republican primary for an Arizona state Senate seat. His opponent: former state senator David Farnsworth, who said he had “no doubt” that the 2020 election was stolen from Trump and that there was “a conspiracy led by the devil himself.” This earned him the support of Trump, who posted online that “Bowers must be defeated.”

Enough Arizona voters agreed, and Bowers lost by 30 points. Bowers admitted to CNN that he “lost big,” adding that the result does not bode well for democracy in the Grand Canyon State.

“It’s very possible that the bill I liberally assigned to my committees will come back” if the denialists win in November, Bowers said. “The chance to get the governor’s signature would just be a disaster. I call it the chance to go back to the dark ages of Arizona.”

The January 6 House committee will resume public hearings this month, and lawmakers are also preparing their final report.

Bowers testified in June about Trump’s pressure campaign to get the legislature to reject the results of the Arizona election. Bowers was formally censured by the Arizona Republican Party’s executive committee after his appearance.
The CNN documentary, “American Coup: The January 6th Investigation,” reexamines key revelations from the commission’s investigation through new interviews with key players and highlights from previous hearings. Highlights include the emotional testimony of former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson and admissions from Trump’s inner circle that he knew he had lost.
With the midterms looming, the Democratic leadership committee only has a few months to go before the GOP takes back the House. If Republicans regain control of the chamber, they are expected to shut down the panel and investigate the select committee itself.