Democrats who praised 2004 objections to Electoral School certification now slam Hawley

Sen. Josh Hawley sparked outrage Wednesday along with his determination to object to the certification of sure states’ Electoral School votes throughout Congress‘ joint session on Jan. 6 — becoming a member of a number of House members who’ve additionally stated they may object to drive a vote in every the Home and the Senate over whether or not to simply accept particular person slates of electors. 

“The political equal of barking on the moon,” Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Unwell., stated of Hawley becoming a member of the problem to electoral slates. “This received’t be taken severely, nor ought to it’s. The American folks decided on Nov. third and that call should and might be honored and guarded by the U.S. Senate and Home of Representatives.”

The problem by Hawley, R-Mo., is nearly sure to fail. The votes to overturn any slates of electors are merely not there in both the Home or the Senate, the place even Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and several other different GOP members have congratulated President-elect Joe Biden on his win. McConnell has discouraged his members from becoming a member of the Home effort to problem electors. 

However Hawley’s transfer is actually not unprecedented.  

The final 3 times a Republican has been elected president — Trump in 2016 and George W. Bush in each 2000 and 2004 — Democrats within the Home have introduced objections to the electoral votes in states the GOP nominee received. In early 2005 particularly, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., together with Rep. Stephanie Tubbs, D-Ohio, objected to Bush’s 2004 electoral votes in Ohio. 


That compelled the chambers to depart their joint session and debate individually for 2 hours on whether or not to reject Ohio’s electoral votes. Neither did. However the objection by Boxer and Tubbs serves as a contemporary precedent for what’s more likely to occur in Congress on Jan. 6. 

Notably, some Democrats lauded Boxer’s transfer on the time, together with Durbin himself. 

“Some could criticize our colleague from California for bringing us right here for this temporary debate,” Durbin said on the Senate floor following Boxer’s objection, whereas noting that he would vote to certify the Ohio electoral votes for Bush. “I thank her for doing that as a result of it offers members a possibility as soon as once more on a bipartisan foundation to take a look at a problem that we face not simply within the final election in a single State however in lots of States.”

Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., is one other senator who beforehand praised Boxer. 

“I consider that Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Consultant Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D-OH) have carried out a really beneficial public service in bringing this debate earlier than the Congress. As Individuals, we must always all be anxious by studies of voting issues in lots of elements of the nation,” Van Hollen, on the time a Home member, stated in a press release. “I’ve been notably involved concerning the lack of a verifiable paper report in reference to digital voting techniques. I’m proud to be a co-sponsor of laws to unravel that downside.”


Van Hollen additionally made clear in 2005 that he accepted the results of the presidential election that Bush received, saying, “It could have been irresponsible to make use of the certification course of to aim to alter that consequence. Doing so would set up a horrible precedent.” Nonetheless, Van Hollen slammed Hawley on Wednesday. 

“Sen. Hawley’s actions are grossly irresponsible. He’s making an attempt to undermine our democratic course of, gasoline Trump’s lies about voter fraud, and delay the certification of Biden’s win,” Van Hollen stated in a tweet. “Ultimately, this reckless stunt will fail, and Joe Biden will turn into President on Jan. 20, 2021.”

One present senator who did vote to outright reject the Ohio electoral votes in early 2005 was then-Rep. Ed Markey, D-Mass. He was amongst 31 House members on the time to vote in favor of rejecting Ohio’s electoral slate.

Markey on MSNBC Wednesday, nevertheless, stated Hawley’s problem “is simply an extension of what Donald Trump is making an attempt to perpetrate as a fraud on the American folks” and “there isn’t a foundation for any questioning of Joe Biden as our subsequent president.”

Boxer was the only senator in 2005 to vote to reject Ohio’s electoral votes. 

It is nearly sure that no states’ electoral votes will truly be rejected by Congress. Doing so, after a problem is lodged by at the very least one member of the Home and Senate respectively, would require a majority vote by each chambers. 

Democrats maintain a majority within the Home. And lots of Senate Republicans have already acknowledged that Biden received the election, which means it is unlikely both chamber will vote to reject a slate of electors. 

Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., asks questions during a Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee hearing to discuss election security and the 2020 election process on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Hawley said Wednesday he will object to the certification of Electoral College votes on Jan. 6. (Greg Nash/Pool via AP)

Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., asks questions throughout a Senate Homeland Safety & Governmental Affairs Committee listening to to debate election safety and the 2020 election course of on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Hawley stated Wednesday he’ll object to the certification of Electoral School votes on Jan. 6. (Greg Nash/Pool through AP)


To that impact, Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., not too long ago stated a problem to electors “will go down like a shot canine.”

Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., made related feedback Wednesday at a press convention. 

“I’ve no doubt that on subsequent Wednesday, every week from at the moment, that Joe Biden might be confirmed by the acceptance of the vote of the Electoral School because the 46th president of the USA,” she stated. 

In 2005 on the Home flooring, Pelosi stated lauded Boxer’s challenge

“Immediately we’re witnessing Democracy at work. This is not as a few of our Republican colleagues have referred to it, sadly, as frivolous. This debate is prime to our democracy,” she stated on the time. “The representatives of the American folks on this home are standing up for 3 basic American beliefs: The precise to vote is sacred; {that a} consultant has an obligation to signify his or her constituents; and that the rule of legislation is the hallmark of our nation.”

Pelosi, nevertheless, made clear that “below the rule of legislation at the moment this Home will settle for the election of President Bush and Vice President Cheney. … There may be completely no query about that. This is not about in any approach rejecting that consequence. … It’s as an alternative to debate the true issues with our electoral system.”

Hawley in his assertion saying that he’ll object to Electoral School certification notably doesn’t undertake among the wilder conspiracy theories pushed by these on the precise concerning the election outcomes. He doesn’t accuse voting expertise firms of fixing votes or of being in cabal with overseas nations. He doesn’t reference alleged poll “dumps.” The truth is, Hawley doesn’t even make an accusation that there was widespread fraud, for which no proof has been discovered. 

5Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks during her weekly news conference on Capitol Hill on December 4, 2020 in Washington, DC. Pelosi in 2005 said that the objection to certifying Ohio's electoral votes for George W. Bush by Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., was a positive chance to discuss election security, not an attempt to overturn the result of the election. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

5Speaker of the Home Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) speaks throughout her weekly information convention on Capitol Hill on December 4, 2020 in Washington, DC. Pelosi in 2005 stated that the objection to certifying Ohio’s electoral votes for George W. Bush by Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., was a constructive likelihood to debate election safety, not an try and overturn the results of the election. (Picture by Drew Angerer/Getty Pictures)

“I can not vote to certify the electoral faculty outcomes on Jan. 6 with out elevating the truth that some states, notably Pennsylvania, didn’t observe their very own state election legal guidelines,” Hawley stated Wednesday. “And I can not vote to certify with out declaring the unprecedented effort of mega firms, together with Fb and Twitter, to intervene on this election, in help of Joe Biden. On the very least, Congress ought to examine allegations of voter fraud and undertake measures to safe the integrity of our elections. However Congress has to this point didn’t act.”

He added: “For these causes, I’ll observe the identical follow Democrat members of Congress have in years previous and object throughout the certification course of on Jan. 6 to lift these crucial points.”


It isn’t clear precisely which states Hawley could be part of Home members and object to. In an interview on “The Story,” visitor hosted by Will Cain, on Wednesday evening he did say that Pennsylvania particularly didn’t observe its personal election legal guidelines.

Hawley additionally in his interview with Cain didn’t explicitly say that his objective in objecting to the electoral votes of some states is to tangibly change the results of the election. He as an alternative stated he hopes to drive a debate on election integrity points and to signify Individuals who do not at the moment place confidence in the electoral system. Hawley additionally didn’t absolutely commit to truly voting towards the certification of any states’ electoral votes. 

“The state that I object to or the states that I object to, and we’ll see how the method goes. However I am more likely to vote towards the certification in an effort to make this level,” Hawley informed Cain. “I’ll attempt to drive a debate on all of those factors.”

When requested what he might accomplish, Hawley added: “You may accomplish truly placing folks on report and forcing this concern to the entrance.”

Hawley’s workplace didn’t broaden on his Wednesday feedback when requested to make clear on Thursday.

Hawley on “The Story” additionally stated there have been irregularities and fraud within the 2020 election and added, “There must be an investigation as to how widespread this fraud was and there must be change. Our election legal guidelines want to alter.” 

The workplaces of Durbin, Van Hollen and Markey didn’t instantly return requests for remark. Pelosi’s workplace pointed to the feedback she made in 2005 making clear Democrats’ objections was to not overturn the results of the presidential election. 

Hawley’s objection will result in debate within the Home and Senate on rejecting slates of electors for simply the third time since 1887, together with the 2005 affair. 

However in 2001 and 2017, a number of Home Democrats objected to the certification of the leads to favor of Bush and Trump, although they weren’t joined by any senators. 

In the course of the 2017 counting of the Electoral School votes, then-Vice President Biden turned visibly agitated as he repeatedly wanted to remind Democratic Home members objecting to Trump electors that there was no debate allowed within the joint session and that they wanted senators to signal their objections. 

In a single occasion, after repeatedly banging his gavel as Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., objected to the outcomes, Biden declared, “It’s over,” sparking laughter and a standing ovation from the GOP aspect of the chamber. 

President-elect Joe Biden speaks at The Queen theater, Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, in Wilmington, Del. Biden in 2017 gaveled down several Democratic House members lodging objections to then-President-elect Trump's electoral votes. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

President-elect Joe Biden speaks at The Queen theater, Monday, Dec. 28, 2020, in Wilmington, Del. Biden in 2017 gaveled down a number of Democratic Home members lodging objections to then-President-elect Trump’s electoral votes. (AP Picture/Andrew Harnik)

At one other time, Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Calif., stated: “I object as a result of individuals are horrified by the overwhelming proof of Russian interference in our election.”

Biden reminded her that debate is prohibited within the joint session and requested Lee whether or not she had a senator’s signature for her objection. 

“Even even with the malfunction of 87 voting machines…” Lee continued earlier than Biden gaveled her down once more. Lee’s mic was minimize and boos rang out by means of the chamber. 

“The objection can’t be entertained,” Biden stated. 


Equally, in 2001, then-Vice President Al Gore batted down Democrats’ challenges to Bush’s victory. 

“The objection is in writing and I don’t care that it isn’t signed by a member of the Senate,” Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., stated within the joint session.

“The chair will advise that the foundations do care,” Gore responded to laughter and applause.

The 2008 Electoral School certification for former President Barack Obama went off and not using a hitch, with no Republicans objecting to the Obama electors. The identical was the case in 2012. 

In 2008 particularly, Obama obtained a raucous standing ovation from each side of the aisle. 

Fox Information’ Jason Donner contributed to this report. 

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