The Oasis Reporters
January 7, 2020
As Donald Trump was speaking extemporaneously and extravagantly outside to his supporters vowing never to concede, Vice President Mike Pence was doing what the constitution specified him to do, as presiding officer in the joint sitting by the Senate and the House of Representatives to certify the electoral college votes.
Trump had earlier claimed that Mike Pence can ‘reject’ electors.
But here’s what the VP can actually do, even though in recent days, President Donald Trump has been pressing Vice President Mike Pence to influence the electoral vote certification on Wednesday.
“The Vice President has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors,” Trump claimed in a Twitter post on Tuesday.
The Vice President has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 5, 2021
The tweet followed Trump calling on the vice president to “come through” for him, in comments he made during a rally Monday night in Georgia for senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue, ahead of today’s runoff elections in the state that will decide which party controls the U.S. Senate. Republican Kelly Loeffley however lost by a wide margin to Raphael Warnock of the Democratic Party, first black democrat to go to the Senate from Georgia.
“I hope Mike Pence comes through for us. I have to tell you,” said Trump. “Of course, if he doesn’t come through, I won’t like him quite as much.”
The president added that Pence was “going to have a lot to say about it. And you know one thing with him, you’re going to get straight shots. He’s going to call it straight.”
Despite Trump’s claims, the Constitution doesn’t grant the vice president that much power. Instead, it’s up to the House and Senate to voice objections to the electoral vote certification.
Under federal law, Congress must meet on January 6 to open sealed certificates from each state that contain a record of their electoral votes.
As President of the Senate, Pence presides over the session.
The presiding officer, which in this case is expected to be Pence, opens the certificates of the electoral votes from each state in alphabetical order. Appointed tellers from the House and Senate then read each certificate out loud and record the vote. At the end of the count, Pence is responsible for announcing the winner.
Pence’s role in the session, according to the Associated Press, is “largely pro forma,” meaning “for the sake of form.”
“What he’ll do is allow anybody who is going to move to object to be heard, but then abide by what the majority of the Senate makes the outcome,” McIntosh added.
An objection to an electoral vote can occur after a teller reads the certificate from a state. However, Pence can’t hear the objection unless it’s written and signed by a member of both chambers.
If there is an objection request, which is likely since multiple GOP lawmakers declared they would object to certain electoral votes, the House and Senate separate and debate for two hours to consider the objection.
For the objection to move forward, both chambers have to agree to it by a majority vote—unlikely with Democrats controlling the House. If they don’t agree, the original electoral votes are counted.
Meanwhile Trump tells supporters he will “never concede”.
Pence gets on with the job, thinking of nation and not self or Trump.
The first state to be called in alphabetical order is Arizona. The votes are objected to by Republican senators.
As the session continues and Trump probably notices that Pence is not “coming through” for him as he had hoped, his band of supporters invade Capitol Hill, with the aim of disrupting the joint session
President elect, Joe Biden has addressed America on this breach caused by Trump supporters, laying out work to be done first as the “restoration of Democracy”.
President-elect Biden addresses the nation: https://t.co/BXM3SZK25R— Biden-Harris Presidential Transition (@Transition46) January 6, 2021
With the confusion in Washington right now, the national guard is mobilizing to clear off the rioters.
Vice President Mike Pence had earlier on ordered the Republican rioters off Capitol Hill and this begins to look like Trump has lost control of the presidency. His incendiary speech has tipped him off balance.
It will be interesting to know Judge Merrick Garland selected as Attorney General by Joe Biden is thinking of or saying right now.