Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) branded Rep. Jim Jordan a “traitor to the Constitution” after the Ohio Republican admitted to sending a text to former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows on Jan. 5 suggesting then-Vice President Mike Pence should stop the certification of the 2020 election.
“Look, Jim Jordan is a traitor. He’s a traitor to the Constitution of the United States. He has been a traitor to the Constitution of the United States for quite a while, and now we actually have it in text,” Gallego told MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell Wednesday night on “The Last Word.”
“Why is anybody surprised?” Gallego asked, and pointed to Jordan’s lies on the House floor on Jan. 6 about voter fraud in states like Arizona.
However, Gallego said Jordan was not his biggest concern.
“My biggest issue is the fact that there’s a lot of people out there that are not taking this seriously,” Gallego said. “The fact that there is a slow-moving coup that is happening right now all over this country that are led by the Jim Jordans and other people.”
Gallego described an insidious process whereby instead of people storming the Capitol to overthrow an election, supporters of former President Donald Trump’s “Big Lie” were trying to win state House and Senate seats and election administration roles so they could “actually overturn the future election.”
“The coup is ongoing,” he said.
Jordan’s office confirmed Wednesday that he was the sender of the message presented earlier this week by the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection. The committee said it was sent by an unnamed lawmaker.
The text laid out a legal theory that claimed Pence had the authority to halt the certification of the Electoral College count on Jan. 6.
Jordan’s office said Joseph Schmitz, a conservative attorney and onetime foreign policy adviser on Trump’s 2016 campaign, wrote the message and sent it to the congressman. Jordan then forwarded it to Meadows.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.