The last ditch effort to stop Trump

  • 5 January 2017
  • NormanL
The last ditch effort to stop Trump

The left is still encouraging a final, though futile, effort to deny Donald Trump's election victory. It could come Friday, when Congress gathers in joint session to make the official count of the electoral votes cast for president. Usually, this is a formality, though there have been challenges in the past, including one in 2005.

But the never say die caucus thinks they have the goods to stop Trump cold this time:

More than 50 Electoral College members who voted for Donald Trump were ineligible to serve as presidential electors because they did not live in the congressional districts they represented or held elective office in states legally barring dual officeholders.

That stunning finding is among the conclusions of an extensive 1,000-plus page legal briefing prepared by a bipartisan nationwide legal team for members of Congress who are being urged to object to certifying the 2016 Electoral College results on Friday.

“Trump’s ascension to the presidency is completely illegitimate,” said Ryan Clayton of Americans Take Action, who is promoting the effort. “It’s not just Russians hacking our democracy. It’s not just voter suppression at unprecedented levels. It is also [that] there are Republicans illegally casting ballots in the Electoral College, and in a sufficient number that the results of the Electoral College proceedings are illegitimate as well.”

“Republicans like to talk all the time about people voting illegally,” Clayton continued. “We have a list of a bunch of Republicans that allegedly voted illegally in the Electoral College. Pam Bondi is the attorney general of the state of Florida and the Florida Constitution says that you cannot hold two offices. And she holds the office of Attorney General and she holds the office of federal elector in the Electoral College. That is a violation of the law. That is a violation of the Constitution. And the vote that she cast in this election is illegal.”

We get it -- the left's new-found admiration for properly cast votes (not to mention the Constitution, and the Electoral College), has lead them to discover what they believe is indisputable proof the election was a sham, and must be decided by Congress.

There's a process for handling this, long established by statute. According to the Congressional Research Service:

Objections may be offered to both individual electoral votes and state returns as a whole. Objections must be filed in writing, and be signed by one U.S. Senator and one Representative. If an objection is received in the joint session, and is determined to be valid, then the electoral vote count session is recessed. The Senate returns immediately to its chamber, and the two houses of Congress consider the objections separately. Under federal law, these sessions cannot last more than two hours, and no Member of either house may speak for more than five minutes. At the end of this period, the houses vote separately to agree or disagree with the objection. The Senate then returns to the House chamber, and the joint session reconvenes. The decisions of the two houses are announced. If both houses agree to the objection, then the electoral vote or votes in question are not counted. Otherwise, the vote or votes stand as submitted, and are counted as such.

This process was most recently used following the 2004 presidential election. An objection was raised to the certificate of the electoral vote filed by the State of Ohio at the joint electoral count session held on January 6, 2005. The objection met the required standards, being submitted in writing, and bearing the signatures of one Representative and one Senator. The joint session was duly recessed, and the two houses of Congress reconvened separately to debate and vote on the objection, which they rejected. The certificate of electoral votes submitted by Ohio was accepted, and the vote was duly recorded.

Seems fairly direct. And it should also tell us exactly how such an objection, based on this report, would turn out: Republicans, controlling both the House and Senate, would reject the challenge, and the review would proceed. That's not to say there could not be a series of hysterics and political theater along the way.

But this "evidence," and any potential challenge, will fail.

We do, however, give Trump's opponents credit for trying...because it meant they had to study the Constitution, and embrace ideas about voting integrity they otherwise dismiss as so much nonsense.