Election day may be a pre-era feeling, but the presidential saga is not over yet. It’s time for Congress to focus – and there’s already plenty of political drama.
The Americans cast their vote on November 3, launching an election process that resulted in Democrat Joe Biden becoming the elected president of the United States.
But the presidential term will not be completed or dusted until Congress approves the results of the Electoral College and Mr. Biden takes his oath of office on January 20th.
There are many things to explain, from constitutional deadlines to congressional objections.
First of all…
What are election votes?
When Americans go to the polls, they are actually voting for a group of officials who make up the election college.
The word “university” here simply refers to a group of people with a shared task. These people are voters and their job is to elect the president and vice president based on the referendum in their states.
There are a total of 538 voters who have been disbanded among the states. Each voter represents one election vote, and in order to win the presidency, a candidate must obtain a majority of at least 270 votes.
In this election, President-elect Joe Biden defeated President Donald Trump by 306-232. He won the referendum with more than seven million votes.
The Electoral College meets every four years, a few weeks after election day, to cast their electoral votes.
What has Congress got to do with this?
Congress will finalize the results of the 2020 elections by validating the votes of the electoral college. This is part of the process enshrined in the Constitution.
All 50 states validated the election result, some after recounting and legal appeals.
On December 14, members of the Electoral College sent their votes from across the country to Congress in a closed diploma.
On January 6, these certificates will be placed in mahogany urns at the Capitol.
Members of both the House of Representatives and the Senate from both parties read the votes in alphabetical order and summarize them.
Vice President Mike Pence, who is president of the senate, presides and finally announces the winner.
His job as president of the senate is to “open all the certificates” in the presence of the House of Representatives and the Senate, according to the U.S. Constitution.
Okay, so if you do, Biden is the winner and we’re all going home?
Not this year. Read more.
Are the results disputed at this point?
Taking note of the outgoing president, several lawmakers said they would raise objections.
This contradicts the advice of Senate leader Mitch McConnell.
An objection will only be heard if all members of the House and Senate submit it. The two chambers then set aside two hours per objection to discuss the matter before voting on whether to maintain it or not.
To cast state election votes, a majority in the House and Senate must vote for this. If the House is under democratic control and the Senate is with the Republicans, it is impossible to extract that.
While there is certainly a precedent for post-election withdrawal and objections have been recorded earlier (most recently in 2005), no debate has ever resulted in the casting of voter votes.
Why are Republicans doing this?
This isn’t exactly Donald Trump’s last position – he can never stop questioning the validity of the 2020 presidential election – but the congressional counting of Electoral College votes is the last major procedural hurdle between Joe Biden and his inauguration.
This is an obstacle that Biden will surely clarify with the help of Democrats and some Republicans.
This is also the last opportunity for the president’s supporters in Congress to show youth with their man while he is still in office.
As such, daytime (and nocturnal, and perhaps future morning) events may shed light on the wide range of grants that the President can still enjoy.
There are already indications that its support may not be as strong as recent predictions suggest.
If Republicans fall short of the 100 votes in the House and the Senate can’t gather more than the dozens of senators who have already announced their intention to object, that could indicate that its future is sharply divided. Does that include unquestioning loyalty to Trump, or one where his power recedes?
No matter the outcome, such a remarkable, unprecedented attempt to reject the results of democratic elections could become a political litmus test, many will not easily forget.
What are the Republican objections?
Led by Texas Senator Ted Cruz, eleven Republican senators want a ten-day delay in verifying unfounded allegations of election fraud.
In a statement, they said the November elections “include unprecedented allegations of voter fraud, violations and loose enforcement of election laws, and other voting irregularities.”
There is no evidence of widespread voter fraud and a number of legal challenges have been raised by the courts. An investigation by the Federal Department of Justice (DOJ) found no evidence to support allegations of fraud.
Lawmakers said they did not “want to obstruct the democratic process,” but proved that the elections were “legally conducted.”
Missouri Senator Josh Hawley has also announced separately that he will object when Congress counts the votes.
In the House, Alabama Congressman Mo Brooks, led by dozens of Trump’s loyal groups, is debating Mr. Biden’s victory in certain states.
MEPs criticize the results achieved by Mr Biden in six key states where the President has challenged the results (Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Nevada). They argue that these states may not have properly followed election laws.
The voting series also raised questions about the role of Vice President Mike Pence in chairing the joint congressional session.
Mr Pence said he “welcomed” the legislators’ objections. But under U.S. election law, Mr. Pence’s duty is purely administrative – and unlikely to try to go beyond it.