Majority of House Republicans Backed Objections to Electoral College Results

January 12, 2021 by Reece Nations

WASHINGTON — Over half of the Republican House caucus last week voted to object to certifying the results of either Arizona, Pennsylvania, or both state’s electoral college results.

Although both chambers of Congress would go on to certify the Electoral College victory of President-elect Joe Biden after a violent mob stormed the United States Capitol last Wednesday, roughly two-thirds of House Republicans backed at least one objection to a state’s presidential results, according to analysis from the University of Virginia Center for Politics. 

In general, lawmakers who objected to certifying both Arizona and Pennsylvania election results were more likely to represent Republican-leaning districts than those who opposed the objections. Of the 211 House Republicans, 120 voted in support of both objections. 

In comparison, 63 Republicans voted against both objections, while 18 voted against the Arizona objection but in support of the Pennsylvania objection, according to UVACFP. Four Republicans did not vote on either objection: Reps. Michelle Steel, R-Calif., Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., Kevin Brady, R-Texas, and Kay Granger, R-Texas. 

While some House Democrats objected to the electoral vote certifications in Congress after the 2000, 2004, and 2016 elections, congressional rules maintain that an objection is only subject to debate when it is supported by both a Senate and House member. In the case of 2004’s election results, former-Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones, D-Ohio, filed an objection to her own state’s election results that was supported by former-Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif. Objections to the 2000 and 2016 elections were not brought up for a floor debate. 

The House Democrats who voted in support of Tubbs Jones’ 2004 objection to Ohio’s Electoral College results said they did so in order to garner support for election reform, according to CNN. None of the objections to the 2000, 2004 and 2016 election results were supported by the losing presidential candidate, unlike the 2020 election results, according to UVACFP. 

In 2016, in the districts of the 63 Republicans who rejected both objections, Trump won by an average margin of 18.6 points. In the districts of the 120 Republicans who backed objections to both states’ results, Trump won by a higher average margin of 28.8 points. 

This data indicates lawmakers from districts with stronger support of Trump were more likely to object to certifying Arizona and Pennsylvania’s results. 

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