WASHINGTON When asked if former President Donald Trump’s tweets were impeding a new legislative push to prevent future candidates from attempting to steal elections, Sen. Susan Collins had a swift response.
The Maine Republican remarked before the Senate went on vacation.
A increasing number of Democratic and Republican senators want to revise the Electoral Count Act of 1887, which established the complicated procedure by which Congress certifies presidential election results. The organization is also looking into new regulations to protect election workers from threats.
For more than a year, Trump has claimed that Vice President Mike Pence could have reversed his electoral loss. On Jan. 6, 2021, a violent mob stormed the Capitol, upsetting a routine and routine operation.
While Pence had previously avoided naming Trump, he did so on Friday. “Trump said I might void the election. “President Trump is wrong,” Pence stated in Orlando.
The Electoral Count Act could be amended to clarify that a vice president cannot invalidate results and to raise the bar for parliamentarians to contest state results.
Trump last week attacked senators in a statement, accusing them of “desperately seeking to pass legislation that will not allow the Vice President to reverse the outcome of the election.”
On Monday, the group convened again. “Didn’t seem to tonight,” said Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.
Trump continued his attacks throughout the week, expressing his frustration at watching “political hacks, liars, and traitors work so hard to modify the Electoral College Act” – and misnaming the Electoral Count Act.
But the senators persevered. The group has recently grown in size and has split into five subgroups to tackle different parts of the law’s reform. Members say they met last week and will meet again this week.
The House Jan. 6 committee and others are looking into measures to prevent coups.
It accelerated last month after the Democrats’ voting rights bills failed. The group wants to duplicate the bipartisan infrastructure deal’s success.
Aides familiar with the talks say it’s on a similar path: Together with West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) over pizza and Zoom talks, moderates from both parties exchanged ideas.
Democrat leaders are again allowing senators to negotiate. The Electoral Count Act “needs fixing,” according to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell,
Last Monday, three Democratic senators — Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Angus King of Maine, and Dick Durbin of Illinois — presented a “discussion draught” with comprehensive recommendations to modernize the presidential count process.
In response to a question on Thursday, Manchin responded, “No, no, no.”
According to him, “basically every good red-blooded American understands and values the Constitution and the freedoms we enjoy.” “We must safeguard it. We need an orderly transfer of power.”
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said Sunday that senators are looking into the Help America Vote Act’s “safeguards” for ballots and workers.
“State of the Union,” she stated that election workers should not be intimidated, threatened, or harassed.
‘A tricky topic’
President Trump and his supporters’ actions may even fuel Senate impeachment efforts, according to Utah Republican Sen. Mitt Romney.
“All those paths need to be blocked – and done so in a clear and persuasive way,” he said, referring to efforts to overturn Trump’s election.
Collins, a leader of the initiative, said the complete group won’t meet for a while and that working in subgroups is “probably more effective.”
“We’re making progress,” she remarked. “This is a complicated topic that gets more complex the more you look into it.”
“This is the most essential thing we have,” added Manchin, the Democratic subgroup’s “chair.” We must succeed. The uprising, or the motivation for insurrection, will never return.”
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., said the process is “early, early, early, early.”
Trump is “wrong” to believe the vice president can overturn an election, according to Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. Still, he said he was open to changing the statute to remove ambiguity.
The effort has already hit roadblocks and is “much more complicated” than envisaged, Capito said.
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