ST. LOUIS – Thirteen US senators, including Josh Hawley of Missouri, are planning to object to Wednesday’s certification of the results of the 2020 presidential election.
“Seventy-four million Americans have concerns about election integrity and we’re supposed to sit down and shut up,” Hawley said. “Somebody has to stand up here. You got 74 million Americans who feel disenfranchised—their vote doesn’t matter—and this is the one opportunity I have as a senator to stand up and say something.”
But former Missouri senator John Danforth—a fellow Republican—scolded Hawley for his position.
“Lending credence to Trump’s false claim that the election was stolen is a highly destructive attack on our constitutional government,” Danforth said. “It is the opposite of conservative; it is radical. As one friend asked me, ‘What are my grandchildren to think of America if they are told that elections are fraudulent?’”
Democratic lawmakers used this same strategy in 2000, 2004, and 2016 according to local election lawyer Brad Young of Harris Dowell Fisher & Young LC.
“Those types of objections are allowed in the Electoral Count Act of 1887,” Young said. “I disagree this is a constitutional crisis but it is an opportunity for congressional members to voice their objections to what they perceive to be voting irregularities.”
The objection will force a two-hour debate in the House and Senate, followed by a vote. For the process to move forward, both chambers must agree to toss out the contested electoral votes.
“Democrats have done this for years in order to raise questions about election integrity,” Hawley said. “And now 74 million Americans have concerns about election integrity and we’re supposed to sit and shut up?”