GOP Rep. Mo Brooks says “dozens” of House Republicans are lining up behind him to challenge the Electoral College results giving Democrat Joe Biden the presidency when Congress meets in joint session Jan. 6 to officially count ballots.
“There are dozens in the House of Representatives who have reached that conclusion that I have; we’re going to sponsor and co-sponsor objections to the Electoral College vote returns,” the Alabama Republican told Fox News on Monday.
Earlier this month, Brooks said he is convinced that the presidential election results in several key battleground states are either fraudulent or were rigged in favor of Democrat Joe Biden after the Trump campaign’s legal team held a series of hearings with state legislative panels in those states.
As such, he said he would challenge the results of the Electoral College which, under congressional rules only takes one member of both congressional chambers.
“In my judgment, if only lawful votes by eligible American citizens were cast, Donald Trump won the Electoral College by a significant margin, and Congress’ certification should reflect that,” Brooks said on the floor of the House Dec. 2.
“This election was stolen by the socialists engaging in extraordinary voter fraud and election theft measures,” he added.
Brooks said at the time he was in contact with an indeterminate number of GOP senators in a bid to convince at least one of them to lodge a challenge in the upper chamber.
If electoral results are challenged, both chambers adjourn from their joint session. Members of the House choose the president and members of the Senate choose the vice president. While it’s likely the House Democratic majority will select Biden*, millions of Americans who share Brooks’ view of the election results are hopeful that the GOP majority would select Vice President Mike Pence to remain for a second term.
“A lot of time is being wasted in court … the Supreme Court does not have the lawful authority to determine whether to accept or reject a state’s Electoral College submissions,” Brooks said during his floor speech.
“Under the United States Constitution and U.S. law, that is the job and duty of elected officials … And so it’s the United States Congress that is the final judge and jury of whether to accept or reject Electoral College submissions by states and to elect who the president and vice president of the United States might be,” he added.
According to various reports, Sen.-elect Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.) and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) have both indicated they may support a challenge in their chamber, though neither has definitively said so publicly.
“The real issue is whether we have any senators who have done their homework and have studied what has transpired … that there has been massive voter fraud and election theft unlike anything we have seen in American history,” Brooks told Fox News on Monday.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) commented over the weekend that he views Brooks’ efforts, which he says will ultimately fail to overturn Biden’s selection, as “a scam.”
In the Senate, the chamber’s second-highest-ranking Republican, Majority Whip John Thune of South Dakota, also said any effort to change the electoral votes was doomed to failure.
But Brooks pushed back, saying he believes his GOP colleagues just don’t want to make “tough decisions.”
“It is sad to the extent that we’ve got Republicans who are unwilling to do their homework or unwilling to make tough decisions,” Brooks said in reference to Kinzinger’s comments.
“If he would do his homework he would understand that the evidence is overwhelming and he can either surrender to the people who support voter fraud elections or he can fight for his country on this particular issue.”
Democrats have used the law to challenge electoral results in the past as well. Party members challenged the 2000 results after George W. Bush won a narrow victory by taking Florida after a heavily contested series of recounts.
*Editor’s note: A reader correctly pointed out that, in the case of contested electoral college results, the House does not decide who the president is. That duty will fall to state legislatures per the 12th Amendment.
How it works is like this: Regardless of the size of each state’s congressional delegation, states only get one vote and, since a majority of state legislatures are controlled by Republicans, the reader stated it’s more likely that President Trump would be reelected.
However, before that process/vote occurs, the House would have to disagree on the slate of electors that have been sent (which is why some states sent GOP electors to the House as well). That’s possible but at this point, it’s not clear whether that will happen. Rep. Brooks plans to contest the electors but it will turn into nothing more than a principled protest if a senator does not join in contesting the electors in that chamber.
There is a lot that is constitutionally murky at this point, but Fox News’ Chad Pergram has a great explainer here. We regret the error and thank the reader for pointing bringing it to our attention.
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