More than 100 Republican congressmen and about a dozen of their fellow party members in the Senate intend to try to block the certification of the electoral college vote, according to which Democrat Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump in the November elections. However, their efforts on Wednesday will almost certainly be in vain.
Certification of the electoral college vote (306 for Biden, 232 for Trump) is the final step before his inauguration as the country’s 46th president on January 20.
To reconsider the election results, both houses of Congress must uphold objections to Biden’s victory. However, the Democrats have a small majority in the House of Representatives and will surely certify Biden’s victory. They are in the minority in the Senate, but along with some Republicans who recognized Biden’s victory, they are likely to do the same in the upper house.
Trump, who for weeks has made unsubstantiated claims that he was robbed of a second term in office, has supported protests against his defeat.
“An attempt to steal a crushing victory,” Trump tweeted over the weekend. “Let’s not let this happen!”
He tweeted a video calling on his supporters to gather in Washington on Wednesday to protest Biden’s certification as an election winner, saying it “could be the biggest event” in the city’s history.
Trump has lost dozens of lawsuits in attempts to challenge the election results, including two in the Supreme Court. On Saturday, a federal appeals court upheld a trial judge’s decision to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to empower Vice President Mike Pence to reject Biden’s electoral rolls in several states and take Trump’s electoral rolls instead to change the election results and keep him in power.
Pence will chair a joint meeting of the houses of Congress on Wednesday on the counting of electoral votes already certified by the 50 states and the metropolitan area of Columbia.
Pence’s chief of staff, Mark Short, said on Saturday that the vice president “shares the concerns of millions of Americans over fraud and irregularities in the last election.”
The statement further notes that the vice president “applauds the efforts of members of the House and Senate to use their statutory powers to raise objections and testify before Congress and the American people on January 6th.”
However, after the electoral votes have been counted and the objections raised, Pence as Vice President and Chairman of the Senate will have to declare the victory of Biden and Harris.
Republican Senator Josh Hawley announced last week that he intends to challenge Biden’s victory in Pennsylvania, which has 20 electoral votes. Objections are also going to express several dozen members of the House of Representatives, headed by Congressman Mo Brooks from Alabama. Hawley’s protest was joined on Saturday by 11 more Republican senators led by Ted Cruz from Texas. Among them are four new senators who were sworn in on Sunday.
The 11 senators have called for a 10-day review of election results in the “disputed states,” saying they will vote to reject electoral votes from those states before the verification is complete.
Pennsylvania Republican Senator Pat Toomey did not join in protesting the state’s vote, saying that “the fundamental defining feature of a democratic republic is the right of the people to elect their leaders.” Attempts to reverse election results in vacillating states, including Pennsylvania, “directly undermine this right,” he said.
One of Trump’s vocal supporters, Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, told NBC on Sunday that he had joined the protest against the Electoral College decision because “tens of millions of people believe the election results were rigged.”
But another Trump supporter, Republican Senator Lindsay Graham of South Carolina, said trying to challenge the results two weeks before the inauguration seemed “more of a political ploy than an effective strategy.”
Cruz and other senators acknowledged that their efforts are unlikely to bring results, saying: “We are prepared for the fact that most Democrats, if not all, and possibly many Republicans will vote against.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell congratulated Biden and Harris on their victory after an Electoral College vote took place in mid-December. However, McConnell was unable to convince fellow Republicans to abandon challenging the results.
Last weekend, Trump demanded that the head of the electoral system of Georgia “find” enough votes to change the results of elections in this state in his favor. In this state, 5 million voters voted, and Biden was ahead of Trump by just 12,000 votes. The votes were counted twice.
Republican Jody Hayes, re-elected to Congress for a fourth term in November, tweeted that he intends to “fight for fair elections by protesting fraud.” “Freedom must be protected!” – he declared.