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Friday, February 26, 2021

Trump Calls on Pence To Send Contested States’ Electors Back to State Legislatures

Speaking before a massive crowd of supporters in Washington, D.C., Wednesday, President Donald Trump called on Vice President Pence to “do the right thing” and send electors back in contested states legislatures for a vote to recertify who won the presidential election.

Pence, who will oversee the counting of the Electoral College votes during a joint session of Congress, indicated in a statement released Wednesday morning the he does not have the authority to do so.

“You don’t concede when there’s theft involved,” Trump said near the beginning of his remarks.

“I hope Mike is going to do the right thing. I hope so. I hope so. Because if Mike Pence does the right thing, we win the election,” the president said.

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“States want to revote. The states got defrauded. They were given false information.”

“They voted on it. Now they want to recertify. They want it back. All Vice President Pence has to do send it back to the states to recertify. And we become president and you are the happiest people.”

Alternate Republican “electors” met last month in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Nevada, Wisconsin, New Mexico and Michigan and voted for Trump and Pence, with an eye toward an Electoral College challenge, as the president’s legal efforts went forward.

Trump campaign senior legal adviser Jenna Ellis argued at the time that the ball is really in the court of these state legislatures at that point.

Do you think Pence has the authority to reject Electoral College votes?

The attorney cited the Constitution’s Article II, Section 1, which provides, “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives” in Congress.

Trump told his supporters that Republicans have to learn a lesson from Democrats and really fight for what they believe in.

“We want to be so respectful of everybody, including bad people, and we’re going to have to fight much harder,” he said.

“And Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us, and if he doesn’t, that will be a sad day for our country.”

The chief executive said Pence’s role is to uphold the Constitution.

“Now it is up to Congress to confront this egregious assault on our democracy,” Trump said.

In a statement released Wednesday morning, Pence said he lacks the authority to “unilaterally” reject the Electoral College results.

“When disputes concerning a presidential election arise, under Federal law, it is the people’s representatives who review the evidence and resolve disputes through a democratic process,” he said.

“Vesting the Vice President with the unilateral authority to decide presidential contests would be entirely antithetical to that design.”

He further noted that no vice president in American history has claimed such authority regarding electoral votes.

“As presiding officer, I will ensure objections that are sponsored by both a Representative and a Senator are given proper consideration, and all facts supporting those objections are brought before the Congress and the American people,” Pence said.

He noted Democrats have raised objections during the congressional counting of the Electoral College vote for the last three times the GOP won the White House.

Republican Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama, who is leading the Electoral College challenge in the House, tweeted Tuesday that objections will be made regarding the electors in at least three states: Arizona, Georgia and Pennsylvania.

Additionally, on Saturday, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and 10 of his Republican colleagues issued a joined statement also calling on Pence to delay the vote for 10 days in order for an audit to be conducted in the contested states.

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