Vice President Mike Pence reportedly told President Trump that he doesn’t believe he has the power to reject state slates of electors in a joint session of Congress on Wednesday, all but ensuring Pence won’t try to stop certification of the electoral college.
Some have pointed to Pence in his capacity as President of the Senate, arguing that the VP has the power to reject slates of electors under the 12th Amendment. Pence is said to have rejected the legal argument in a discussion with the President, recognizing that slates of electors from contested states are legally valid. However, Pence did state that he will “continue to study” legal arguments maintaining the Vice President has powers under the 12th Amendment to reject slates of electors.
President Donald Trump had suggested Pence could object to slates of electors in contested states, potentially placing the imperative on state legislatures in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Wisconsin to nominate pro-Trump slates of electors. Such a result would’ve allowed legislatures to appoint pro-Trump electors.
The Vice President has the power to reject fraudulently chosen electors.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 5, 2021
Trump had also asked Pence to object to electoral college certification during Tuesday’s Georgia MAGA rally. A Pence objection would’ve likely set up a difficult and uphill legal battle in the court system, with states such as Pennsylvania suing to uphold the status of their slate of Joe Biden electors.
Some of Tuesday’s reports suggested Pence wouldn’t even preside over proceedings on Wednesday, but officials close to the Vice President rejected such an assertion. It’s expected Pence will appear to preside over the Senate for the electoral college count.
— Kevin Liptak (@Kevinliptakcnn) January 5, 2021
With Vice President Pence poised to act as a de facto game announcer on Wednesday’s joint session of Congress as opposed to a participant, the final means for the Republican Party to secure a Trump election victory in the Electoral College has dissipated.
Mitch McConnell Censured by Nelson County, Kentucky Republican Party for Betrayal of President Trump
Kentucky Republicans aren’t happy.
Kentucky Senator and Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has been formally censured by the Nelson County, Kentucky Republican Party, with party officials accusing the establishment Republican of betraying President Donald Trump.
A censure resolution was unanimously approved on Tuesday evening, in response to McConnell’s claim that President Trump was responsible for a raucous protest at the US Capitol earlier this month.
The censure “demands (McConnell) retract his statements impugning the honor of President Donald J. Trump,” referring to claims made that President Trump incited the Capitol riot. President Trump had urged rallygoers to proceed to the Capitol peacefully, before a small minority of those present took matters too far and trespassed onto Capitol grounds, disrupting election certification proceedings.
“I think it’s despicable. I think it’s a shame what he did today, because he used us over the past year to get his sorry butt reelected,” said a Kentucky Republican who phoned into the Nelson County GOP meeting in which McConnell was censured. “He used us.”
The censure resolution accuses McConnell of having “abandoned his Republican base that put him in office.”
McConnell has even gone so far as to suggest that he’d consider convicting President Trump in an impeachment trial, even after he’s left office. Such a development would represent no less than a final, ultimate betrayal of President Trump, with legal experts suggesting such a move isn’t even legal, with the Senate lacking jurisdiction to convict a private citizen.
Kentucky Republicans are also pushing for a rebuke of McConnell within the Kentucky Republican Party at the state level, and activists aim to pass a resolution requesting that McConnell shut down a second, hoax impeachment trial of President Trump, who has since left office.
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