Pennsylvania state Republican Sen. Doug Mastriano laced into Twitter for suspending his personal account after he organized a hearing in Gettysburg to investigate claims of widespread vote fraud on Wednesday.
“This censorship is unacceptable in America. A nation that I served for most of my adult life,” he tweeted on his official senate account along with a screengrab of a suspension notice from the social media platform.
This censorship is unacceptable in America. A nation that I served for most of my adult life…
The point of Twitter suspending this personal account is to prevent me from posting to my Senate account— to silence our voice. pic.twitter.com/ZqxUCcUxo6
— Senator Doug Mastriano (@SenMastriano) November 27, 2020
“The point of Twitter suspending this personal account is to prevent me from posting to my Senate account— to silence our voice,” he added.
In a speech ahead of hearings that featured a call-in from President Donald Trump, Mastriano lamented that they were even necessary, noting that in a country as highly advanced as the United States, elections were often more secure in third-world countries.
“I don’t even know how this happened in America,” Mastriano, a military historian with a Ph.D. and a retired U.S. Army colonel, said. “We can send, 50 years ago…men to the moon, but we can’t have a safe and secure election in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. What’s going on here? It’s gotta be by design because we have the technology, we have stealth aircraft that are the envy of the world, but we can’t run an election better than Afghanistan?”
After noting that he and another lawmaker sitting in the hearing were deployed to Afghanistan, Mastriano said it made no sense to him how officials there could hold a more secure election than in his own state.
“Beam me up Scotty, there’s no sign of intelligent life anywhere, really,” he said mockingly. “We move Heaven and earth with American dollars to secure elections in Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere, [but] we can’t do it in our own state? It’s by design.”
The GOP senator went on to say that state lawmakers have to do two things:
“First off, we need to make sure the real winner is sent forth…from the presidential election,” he said to cheers, suggesting that the state’s electors are still in play, though Pennsylvania has been called for Democrat Joe Biden.
“And number two…we need to fix this so it doesn’t ever happen again,” Mastriano continued.
“I can’t believe we’re having this conversation here in Pennsylvania. This is the kind of stuff I hear that goes on” in countries like Belarus, Russia, “and Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.”
“Really? Here, in our state? I mean, this is disgusting to me,” he said. “What happened? What happened?”
“We’re not going to let it stand,” someone said off-camera.
“We’re not gonna let it stand,” Mastriano repeated.
He went on to recall he had seen a man in Philadelphia recently carrying a sign that said: “‘democracy dies in Philadelphia,’” noting the “irony” that the city is where American revolutionaries declared their independence from Britain in 1776.
Mastriano also recalled the name of a man, Todd Beamer, one of a number of passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 93 who attempted to regain control of the plane after it had been hijacked on Sept. 11, 2001.
Beamer’s last words reportedly were to his cohorts: “Let’s roll.”
“You know what? It’s our time to roll,” Mastriano said. “We’re gonna take our state back.”
Several media outlets reported that claims of widespread vote fraud in Pennsylvania and elsewhere are “baseless,” but several witnesses who appeared at the Gettysburg hearings gave testimony to the contrary.
One of them, retired Army Col. Phil Waldron, a cybersecurity expert who dealt with intelligence and information warfare for three decades, testified that the electronic voting machines used in Pennsylvania and elsewhere on Election Day “were built to be manipulated.”
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