Jan 6 hearings: Rusty Bowers gets outpouring of support after revealing daughter was dying amid Trump election harassment

Arizona’s election chief Rusty Bowers has received an outpouring of support after he gave an emotional testimony against former president Donald Trump’s attempts to overturn the 2020 election.

Bowers told the January 6 House committee on Tuesday how he was smeared by Trump supporters for refusing to call the 2020 election “rigged” and shared that groups of them had even appeared outside his home.

Mr Bowers said Trump supporters accused him of being “a paedophile and a pervert and a corrupt politician, and blaring loudspeakers in my neighbourhood”. Some had arms, he claimed.

The Arizona House speaker, who appeared emotional at times, said his severely ill daughter Kacey Rae Bowers was at home during the demonstrations and “was upset by what was happening”.

She died on 28 January 2021 of a longterm ilness, days after Mr Biden was inaugurated and Mr Trump’s alleged pressure campaign.

Mr Bowers wrote in a Facebook tribute at the time: “She is a marvelous and talented woman, a strong defender and vibrant advocate for her son, Lorenzo, 20, for her family and faith, and for the wonderful people she worked with in her counseling service work. How she loves you all, constantly speaking of growth and hope and successes her clients made. Please don’t give up.”

Kacey Rae Bowers, the daughter of Arizona House speaker Rusty Bowers

On Tuesday, many politicians, lawyers and political commentators praised Mr Bowers for his testimony following the hearing.

“I’ve rarely agreed with Rusty Bowers but he deserves credit for standing up for democracy,” wrote Ruben Gallego on Twitter. “MAGA Republicans in Arizona were ready to stage a coup.”

The Arizona Democrat continued: “Today’s hearing reveals yet another example of just how far Trump and his cronies were willing to go to overthrow our government. Speaker Bowers and I will never agree on most politics but I hope I can raise my son to have the same integrity as he does”.

“Rusty Bowers continues to show what differentiated him (and continues to differentiate him from Giuliani and Trump,” wrote Tim O’Brien, author of the 2005 biography “TrumpNation: The Art of Being the Donald”.

“They asked him to break the law and be a good Republican. He repeatedly told them that observing the law and his oath to the Constitution and his state came first”.

Former BBC journalist and author Rory Cellan-Jones added: “The end of Bowers testimony where he describes the abusive mobs that gather outside his home threatening him and his family is truly shocking. What has America become?”

Mr Bowers said he was asked by the former Republican president and his legal team – including Rudy Giuliani –  to decertify US President Joe Biden’s win in the state.

“And I said, I’ve got some good attorneys, and I’m going to give you their names. But you’re asking me to do something against my oath and I will not break my oath,” Mr Bowers recalled saying.

The Arizona Republican said he pushed back against Mr Trump because “It’s a tenet of my faith that the Constitution is divinely inspired”. That lead the single-term president to pursue other strategies to attempt overturning the 2020 election, although all failed.

In a statement before the committee hearing, Mr Trump took aim at Mr Bowers and said he was told by the Arizona election official the election was “rigged”. Mr Bowers, however, disputed those claims.

Douglas Mateo

Douglas holds a position as a content writer at Neptune Pine. His academic qualifications in journalism and home science have offered her a wide base from which to line various topics. He has a proficiency in scripting articles related to the Health industry, including new findings, disease-related, or epidemic-related news. Apart from this, Douglas writes an independent blog and assists people in living healthy life.

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