In a likely fatal blow to President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 election, members of the Electoral College in all six crucial swing states where Trump has been attempting to contest the vote cast their ballots for Democrat Joe Biden on Monday.
The vote decisively seals the results of the hotly-contested election, leaving no doubt that Joe Biden will officially be declared president-elect.
Despite ongoing tensions and the threat of an outbreak of mass protests at electoral meeting sites, electors in the main battleground states Trump’s campaign disputed – Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – cast their votes for Biden without any last-minute surprises or defections, reports Reuters.
Republican lawmakers had previously said that the vote would end their support for Trump’s faltering legal efforts to reverse the Nov. 3 election.
“It’s not just out of tradition but to show folks, especially now more than ever, our system works,” said Republican New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu in remarks that preceded the state’s four electors casting their votes Biden.
16 electors in Michigan voted for Biden, just after 63 votes were cast for him earlier in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Once Biden receives 270 ballots – which is expected after California’s electors cast their votes – Biden will have officially received enough votes to be declared president-elect. The votes will then officially be tallied by Congress on Jan. 6.
While the meeting of the Electoral College is a major step in the electoral process, it has never been a major political event until this year, when Trump failed in his reelection bid by some seven million votes and refused to concede. Instead, the president has insisted that the election was “rigged.”
Trump, who commands fierce loyalty from his conservative base, has also been supported in his claims by a number of Republican lawmakers who have said that he has the right to pursue legal challenges even while privately criticizing the president attempts to subvert the election results. However, the casting of votes by electors will offer some closure to the process.
“The Electoral College obviously brings some finality to this,” Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, the second highest-ranking Republican in the chamber, told reporters last Wednesday. South Carolina GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham, another Trump loyalist, also said when asked whether the president should concede, “I’ll talk to you December the 14th.”
Meanwhile, over half of Republican voters continue to believe that either President Trump won the 2020 race or they aren’t entirely sure who won the election, according to a recent survey by researchers from Harvard, Northeastern University, Northwestern University, and Rutgers.
On Sunday, Trump said in a Fox News interview that he plans to continue to fight the results, even after the Supreme Court on Friday roundly rejected a lawsuit by Texas to nullify the results of the election in four of six battleground states. The case, which Trump had touted as “the big one,” had the support of Republican attorneys general in 18 states and 126 House Republicans.
The Texas case was the latest defeat for the president’s campaign and his allies, who have filed dozens of lawsuits attempting to invalidate Biden’s victories in key swing states. Almost all cases were rejected due to a lack of any evidence of fraud.
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