President Trump’s final and worst shot at overturning the 2020 election will come on Jan. 6, as the brand new Congress meets in joint session to tally the votes from the Electoral School. Mr. Trump desires Republican lawmakers to lodge formal objections to Joe Biden’s electors, and this kamikaze mission already has just a few volunteers.
Right here’s what would occur subsequent, no less than in keeping with the Electoral Rely Act: If a state’s electors are challenged by each a Senator and a Consultant, then every chamber is meant to retire to contemplate it. In the event that they rejected the electors of sufficient states to disclaim Mr. Biden 270 electoral votes, then the Home would select the President.
However how may lawmakers justify throwing out electors for Mr. Biden? Though Mr. Trump retains tweeting claims of large vote fraud, his lawsuits have been rejected in court docket, typically by his personal conservative appointees.
Any problem to Mr. Biden’s electors seems doomed, since upholding the objection takes a majority in each chambers. The Democratic Home would use the chance to excoriate Mr. Trump a remaining time on his means out the door, and grown-ups within the Republican Senate are unlikely to play alongside. Therefore the Trump crowd’s newest argument: that the facility to invalidate electors rests with the joint session’s presiding officer—Vice President Mike Pence.
A nub of reality right here is that the Electoral Rely Act is likely to be unconstitutional. Initially handed after the contested-election mess of 1876, it purports to let a easy majority of Congress determine which presidential electors are legitimate, an influence that’s laborious to justify beneath the Structure or separation-of-power rules.