• Congress’s Electoral College Challenge Important – but VP Pence’s Decision the Right One

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    Surge Summary: The Congressional challenge/debate of the Electoral College’s 2020 presidential race tally is merited and important. Vice President Pence’s decision to not overthrow the results was also the proper and prudential decision. 

    by Gary Bauer

    [Wednesday] morning, just before Congress convened to count the Electoral College votes, President Trump addressed a massive crowd, which he described as “hundreds of thousands of patriots” who came to Washington to “save our democracy.”  Many of you who read this daily report were in this crowd [Wednesday].

    The president blasted the “fake news media” as “the single biggest problem we have,” and declared that Big Tech “rigged the election.”  He accused the media and the tech giants of suppressing free thought and free speech. He is right.

    President Trump vowed to never concede when “theft is involved,” and he outlined a litany of alleged illegal actions in various states that corrupted the election.

    The president was bi-partisan in his criticism, directing much of his ire at “weak Republicans,” promising to “primary the hell out of the ones that don’t fight.”  On that point, I completely agree with him!

    As I have repeatedly done in recent days, President Trump also demanded “sweeping election reforms,” and vowed, “Today is not the end.  It’s just the beginning!”

    Unfortunately, it was also obvious that President Trump and Vice President Pence disagree about what authority the vice president has in his role [Wednesday] as he presides over the joint session of Congress.  (See next item.)

    Vice President Pence has been one of the most loyal, if not the most loyal, vice presidents to a Republican president that I have ever witnessed.  My guess is that the position he finds himself in right now is breaking his heart.

    I know he believes that he and the president were victims of a stolen election, made easier by cowardly Republican officials in states like Georgia.  And the courts were afraid to intervene.

    But I believe that if the vice president took the action that the president is urging him to take, it would not stand up under judicial scrutiny, assuming it survived obvious procedural challenges in Congress.

    We should all be praying for the president, the vice president and our country’s future.

    Counting The Votes

    As the president was concluding his remarks, Congress began meeting in a joint session to count the Electoral College votes.  This is expected to be a long process.

    Dozens of members of the House and Senate are expected to challenge or object to the results from six states – Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

    Each objection requires members to return to their respective chambers for two hours of debate and votes in the House and the Senate.

    Then members of Congress will reconvene in the joint session to announce the results of the objection from each chamber, and proceed with the count until the next objection is heard.

    That’s at least twelve hours of debate.  And even more time is required given current COVID restrictions for the votes and reconvening of the joint session of Congress.

    Needless to say, we are following these events very closely.  But I want to be honest with you:  I do not see a scenario that results in Donald Trump taking the oath of office on January 20th.

    Please don’t blame the messenger.  I am obligated to tell you what I see and hear around Washington.

    I believe it is extremely important for each objection to be heard in order to expose the irregularities so they don’t happen again.  But my gut instinct tells me that these challenges and objections face very long odds, primarily because House Democrats will reject every single objection.

    Some have suggested that Vice President Mike Pence has the authority to make certain rulings or declarations.  I do not believe that is the case.

    His role in the proceedings is limited by the 1887 Electoral Count Act, which defines the process for counting Electoral College votes.

    Under the Electoral Count Act, the vice president’s role is purely ceremonial.  The act is clear that any disputes or objections are to be resolved by votes in the individual houses of Congress, not by the vice president.

    In recent days, Rep. Louie Gohmert filed a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Electoral Count Act.  His lawsuit sought to give Pence the power to make authoritative rulings.

    By virtue of filing that lawsuit, Gohmert acknowledged that the vice president currently does not have that power.  Two federal courts dismissed the case.

    Those suggesting that Pence has that power would be agreeing with the notion that four years ago Joe Biden could have rejected the Electoral College votes and declared Hillary Clinton the winner of the 2016 presidential election.

    The views here are those of the author and not necessarily Daily Surge

    Originally Posted here.

    Image: By Gage Skidmore from Peoria, AZ, United States of America – Mike Pence, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=51744826

    Gary Lee Bauer is an American politician and activist, who served in the Reagan administration. He later became president of the Family Research Council and a senior vice president of Focus on the Family. In 2000, he participated in the Republican presidential contest.

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