Newly-elected Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville of Alabama thought the solution to a safer inauguration for President-Elect Joe Biden was to delay it by a few weeks.
Tuberville won the Senate race on November 3 after defeating incumbent Democratic Senator Doug Jones and was among a handful of Republicans who refused to certify the Electoral College win of Joe Biden.
The former coach for Auburn University's football team has had no previous political experience.
In an interview with CBS affiliate WIAT – while visiting Veterans Affairs (VA) hospital in Montgomery, Tuberville said:
"We probably could have had the swearing-in and done an inauguration a little later on after we got this virus behind us a little bit. Again, we're talking about Washington, D.C."
You can watch the video clip below.
Newly sworn-in Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville suggests delaying Biden’s inauguration, even though date is set… https://t.co/HXqTFK7sYG— CBS News (@CBS News)1610737208.0
Social media users invoked section 1 of the 20th Amendment of the Constitution to remind Tuberville that the presidential transfer of power has to happen "at noon on the 20th day of January."
His seeming lack of knowledge concerning U.S. politics and history was evident before when he claimed his father fought in World War II "to free Europe of socialism."
It must have slipped the Senator's mind that the U.S. formed a Grand Alliance with Great Britain and the Soviet Union to fight fascism during WWII.
He also erroneously identified the three branches of the federal government as consisting of "the House, the Senate, and the executive" during an interview with The Alabama Daily News.
The Senator failed to recognize at the time of the interview the three branches of government – as laid out in the Constitution – was the executive, which includes the presidency; the legislative, which includes both the Senate and the House; and the judicial, which includes the Supreme Court.
To review, a list of things Tommy Tuberville has told us he doesn’t know in the two months since he was elected: -… https://t.co/2FqjT30LDH— Robyn Hammontree (@Robyn Hammontree)1610681575.0
The Electoral Votes confirming President-Elect Biden were made official hours after pro-Trump insurrectionists stormed the U.S. Capitol.
At the time of the WIAT interview, the House had not yet voted to impeach President Donald Trump for his role in inciting the Capitol riot that resulted in five deaths.
Tuberville made it clear he was not in favor of impeaching Trump, saying:
"We're worrying about impeaching a guy that only going to be there seven more days. Makes no sense to me."
Twitter relentlessly trolled Tuberville for his confusion about the timing of the January 20 inauguration.
@CBSNews This just in, a football coach from Alabama has no idea how the government works.— Brandon (@Brandon)1610737300.0
@secupp My god @TTuberville just thought you could move the inauguration like a scheduling conflict.— Brian Wolf (@Brian Wolf)1610767852.0
@maura_resister @tedlieu @BigMookie6 Newly minted Alabama Sen. Tommy Tuberville didn't know what the 3 branches of… https://t.co/lXaszTYzr2— Andrew Bailey (@Andrew Bailey)1610864321.0
Tommy Tuberville wants to delay the inauguration. I want to expel him from the senate for his seditious behavior tr… https://t.co/rKBKZ07bgD— Justin Horwitz (@Justin Horwitz)1610687774.0
Will Tommy Tuberville actually serve out a six year term? He doesn't seem to fully understand what a Senator does o… https://t.co/FpEkzDPsAp— Drew Savicki 🦖🦕🦖 (@Drew Savicki 🦖🦕🦖)1610682533.0
Real good chance Tommy Tuberville ends up being the worst U.S. senator in modern history. https://t.co/zrGJMusygl— Timothy Burke (@Timothy Burke)1610684134.0
@CBSNews Can’t fix stupid.— tikiteco (@tikiteco)1610737274.0
@CNNPolitics There should be some kind of civics test requirement to run for office. This is ridiculous. An 8th gra… https://t.co/p1mVNaAQhO— Kristin Tuten (@Kristin Tuten)1610726182.0
The Senator's spokeswoman Ryann Durant, attempted to mitigate the backlash by explaining the public misconstrued his statement.
"It's incorrect to interpret the senator's comments as calling for the postponement the actual act of swearing-in President-elect Biden."
"The senator spent the last two days visiting with Alabama medical care providers to receive updates on the ongoing pandemic. Understanding the widely recognized health and safety concerns regarding large gatherings, the senator was suggesting the public gathering for inaugural ceremonies could be reconsidered."
"As the Senator has previously said, President-elect Biden will take over next week."
The Senator plans to return to the nation's capital next week after a few more stops visting VA hospitals and nursing homes in his state.