On Safe Harbor Deadline (And His Own Self-Imposed Deadline), Will Rob Portman Utter The Words “President-Elect Joe Biden”?

COLUMBUS — Sen. Rob Portman has so far made the political calculus not to offend Donald Trump by uttering the phrase “President-elect Joe Biden,” but with today marking the so-called “safe harbor” deadline, Portman now faces a quandary — does he admit reality or continue to pander to the Trump dead-enders?

“Rob Portman is worried about his re-election, so he has been cautious in trying not to poke the bear, but the facts are clear — Joe Biden won an overwhelming victory, crushing Donald Trump by more than 7 million votes in the popular vote and besting him decisively in the Electoral College,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman David Pepper. “Today is the day that the senator himself set out as when ‘the 2020 election [must be] brought to a close.’ Will Rob finally speak up and acknowledge reality? Joe Biden is the President-elect, and he will be sworn in on Jan. 20.

“Throughout this post-election process, Rob has tried to sugarcoat what Trump has been doing, which is trying to subvert the will of the voters as he has contacted Republican officials in at least three states and asked them to overturn the results of a democratic election. Trump’s lawyers have threatened violence, and armed protesters have intimidated election officials outside their homes. Still Portman has continued to pretend this is just about allowing legal strategies to play out. It’s not. Trump’s goal isn’t to win the election. It’s to undermine our democratic process, and Portman has refused to call it out because he cares more about covering his own backside than standing up for American democracy.”