A shocking 147 Republicans in Congress voted to overturn the outcomes of the 2020 presidential election primarily based on lies about widespread voter fraud ― lies that, by lawmakers’ personal admission, incited supporters of then-President Donald Trump to violently storm the U.S. Capitol in January.
The in the end unsuccessful effort sought to toss out electoral votes from Arizona and Pennsylvania, doubtlessly disenfranchising tens of millions of Americans.
Now, lots of those self same Republican lawmakers are up in arms a couple of Democratic invoice on voting and marketing campaign finance reform that handed by a close to party-line vote within the House of Representatives on Wednesday. The laws, known as the For The People Act, would successfully nullify the brand new wave of voter restrictions that Republicans are pushing on the state degree. It faces exceedingly troublesome odds of passage within the Senate.
Among different provisions, the invoice mandates that states present no-excuse absentee voting, at the very least 15 days of early voting and provisional ballots; requires that states set up computerized voter registration; and restores voting rights to individuals convicted of felonies upon launch from jail in states that ban them from voting. In essence, it could preserve and broaden voter lodging that some states made throughout the coronavirus pandemic.
Republicans are objecting to the House invoice on the grounds that it could power states to undertake procedures decreed by the federal authorities, arguing that states must be left free to resolve how they run elections. This is a precept that many Republicans deserted in January once they sought to overturn the 2020 presidential election as a result of they opposed state legal guidelines governing that election, which had been handed in some instances by GOP-controlled state legislatures.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), a type of 147 Republicans who voted to toss the Electoral College outcomes, claimed that the Democratic invoice would “put a thumb on the scale of every election in America.”
Sen. John Kennedy (La.), one in every of seven GOP senators who voted to throw out the election outcomes, stated the invoice “takes all the things that went wrong in our election of Nov. 3 and makes them the law.”
“Basically, Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi just wants to federalize elections. She wants to federalize everything,” Kennedy advised HuffPost.
But simply two months in the past, it was Republicans in Congress arguing that the federal authorities ought to interpret state legal guidelines in ways in which would assist Trump overturn the outcomes of the 2020 election he misplaced.
In objecting to the election outcomes from Pennsylvania, which President Joe Biden received by 81,660 votes, Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) argued that Congress ought to successfully overturn a regulation handed by the Republican-controlled state legislature in 2019 as a result of, in response to Hawley’s interpretation of Pennsylvania state regulation, it violated the state’s structure.
“Pennsylvania elected officials passed a whole new law that allows universal mail-in balloting, and did it irregardless of what the Pennsylvania Constitution said,” Hawley contended on Jan. 6.
Normally, such a dispute would have been dealt with by Pennsylvania state courts, however nobody challenged the bipartisan regulation after it handed in 2019. Republicans challenged it solely after Trump misplaced the state in November 2020. These challenges failed earlier than each choose on the state and federal degree, all the way in which as much as the U.S. Supreme Court. But Hawley nonetheless thought that Congress ought to ignore these selections and that of the state legislature to impose its personal authorized interpretation.
When Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) objected to the election outcomes from Arizona, he didn’t point out any specifics about Arizona’s election legal guidelines. He as a substitute proposed the creation of a particular electoral fee made up of federal officers to research the six states the place Trump falsely claimed fraud had value him the election.
Yet on Thursday, Cruz chided House Democrats for displaying “arrogance” in advancing a invoice that may exert federal requirements over state election methods and, he charged, create alternatives for voter fraud.
“Today’s Democratic Party will do anything in pursuit of political power,” Cruz advised HuffPost.
To Democrats, nonetheless, all this GOP criticism of the House election invoice sounds disingenuous given the occasions of Jan. 6, when Republicans tried to erase the outcomes of elections administered by the states even after an armed mob invaded the U.S. Capitol in hopes of forcing them to take action.
“I think that their conduct in the wake of the election disqualifies them from being experts or even responsible commentators on what democracy in America should look like,” stated Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.), the lead sponsor of the House invoice.
“They have spent the last month complaining about these state laws and how we need to have change,” stated Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), one of many lead sponsors of the corresponding Senate invoice. “They want to have commissions look at things. Well, here’s your chance, man.”
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