4:47 p.m., January 5, 2021
It is a crusade doomed to failure that Donald Trump and some of his most fervent supporters are about to deliver. On Wednesday, while Congress will have to ratify Joe Biden’s victory, Republican elected officials intend to oppose the results in at least six key states, according to one of the leaders of this institutional sling, Alabama representative Mo Brooks: Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada. Like Donald Trump, these Republicans denounce fraud that no one has yet been able to prove. Justice has also rejected almost all of the complaints filed since the election.
A strategy doomed to failure
Under the aegis of Vice President Mike Pence, also Speaker of the Senate, the two chambers will meet at 1 p.m. local time to count the ballots of the voters. Traditionally, this process takes about half an hour, but that is unlikely to be the case this year. As permitted by law, elected members of Congress can object to each state’s outcome in writing. If at least one representative and one senator support this approach, the two chambers then meet separately to debate and vote within a time limit of two hours maximum.
For a result to be rejected, both chambers must support this initiative. However, the House of Representatives has a democratic majority and will be able to block all attempts at obstruction. In addition, some elected Republicans should also oppose the challenge of the results. The leader of the Republican senators, Mitch McConnell, for example, asked his troops to admit the victory of the Democrats. The Congress will therefore validate the victory of Joe Biden, it is a certainty, but the question is to know how long it will take him.
Trump keeps up the pressure
No matter, Donald Trump has chosen to contest the election results to the end, which he deems “rigged.” So on Dec. 21, he brought together Republican elected officials at the White House to coordinate the Jan. 6 offensive.
I will lead an objection to Georgia’s electors on Jan 6.
The courts refuse to hear the President’s legal case.
We’re going to make sure the People can!
— Rep. Jody Hice (@CongressmanHice) December 22, 2020
According to Mo Brooks, there are “dozens” of them who want to lead the sling to Congress on Wednesday. Some of them have already made it known on Twitter or in the media.
Millions of voters concerned about election integrity deserve to be heard. I will object on January 6 on their behalf pic.twitter.com/kTaaPPJGHE
— Josh Hawley (@HawleyMO) December 30, 2020
Donald Trump has maintained pressure on his troops for several weeks to ensure their loyalty. In recent days, he also warned Mike Pence: “I hope that our great vice-president will not disappoint us,” he said. “If he disappoints us, I would like him less,” he added. But for lack of a majority in both chambers, Mike Pence could hardly help but endorse the victory of Joe Biden.
A demonstration around the Capitol
So to be able to continue his obstruction, Donald Trump also called on his supporters to meet in the streets of Washington. On Monday, he shared this video clip to encourage mobilization:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2021
Several close to the US president are expected to speak, including George Papadopoulos, a former campaign adviser, and Roger Stone, a longtime ally, both of whom were recently pardoned after being convicted in the Russian case.
The Proud Boys, a far-right group that has been contesting Biden’s victory for several weeks, will also be there. “We will be incognito and we will deploy in downtown Washington in small groups,” said their leader. What to worry the American authorities.
“Threats of violence”, “ploys to bring in weapons” and “calls for an ‘armed camp'” have proliferated on the Internet, writes the Washington Post. However, the event must be held on the outskirts of the Capitol, where the Congress traditionally meets. The Washington police chief therefore told reporters that “no violence will be tolerated.”