Trump’s rhetoric in the months since Joe Biden lost the November 3rd election has sparked speculation that he might use the military to stay in power. Trump has repeatedly and emphatically said he was cheated of the victory and defiantly urged his supporters to continue to press for the results to be overturned. These ingredients were seen as trailblazers for potential unrest and violence.
The group of 10 made it clear that they had no sympathy for Trump’s attempts to overthrow the election by whatever means. “The time to question the results is over. The time has come for the formal counting of the votes of the electoral college as required by the Constitution and the Statute, ”they wrote.
The signatories served under President George H.W. Bush (Cheney), Bill Clinton (William Cohen, William Perry), George W. Bush (Donald Rumsfeld, Robert Gates), Barack Obama (again Gates, Leon Panetta, Chuck Hagel and Ashton Carter) and Trump.
A former defense official who also served under Trump expressed his approval of the Post Opinion Pillar.
“Today’s statement from all living former defense ministers is extraordinary in scope and directness.” said Mick Mulroy, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East. “It should be. I volunteered for the changeover as soon as I was asked. I am not a partisan, but that is beyond partisanism. It is the duty of every American, especially those who have sworn an oath, to serve the Constitution to ensure the peaceful transfer of power to the duly elected President. There should be no further delay in this process, especially on the part of the Department of Defense. “
Lara Seligman contributed to this report.