I have never had occasion to question the patriotism of an elected official. Rep. Mike Garcia’s military service not withstanding, his objection to the state-certified electoral votes of some states causes me to do so.
Garcia explained: “I do believe there is enough evidence of compromised processes and breakdowns in election integrity by certain state legislatures that do in fact warrant a closer examination.”
If election fraud is so widespread, why is it that after multiple recounts and state audits, and 60-plus lawsuits, there has been no evidence presented of fraud indicating a “breakdown in election integrity”? Allegations? Lots. Evidence? None. William Barr’s Justice Department also found no evidence of fraud threatening the integrity of the election. Secretaries of state in several states have been playing whack-a-mole debunking myths. Going to court would have been the ideal time to bring forth evidence!
There was a motion Jan. 3 to not seat the congressional representatives from those states. Garcia voted to seat those representatives who were elected on the same ballots with the same procedures and checks that Garcia objected to for the presidential race, revealing the breathtaking scope of Garcia’s hypocrisy.
To claim that the intent is only to ask questions and get an investigation of the election is baloney. Recounts, audits and lawsuits provided ample opportunity for that. President Donald Trump did not concede, and made great efforts to spread disinformation and to pressure state officials to fix the election for him.
The clauses of the Constitution Garcia quotes as a basis for getting involved say that the state legislatures shall define how the electors are selected. All of the states certified that their slates of electors were properly chosen. All those certifications happened by the “safe harbor” date. That is the end of the story. There is no role for Congress to get in the middle and invalidate a state’s certified electors.
On top of that, there is no debate that Trump lost the overall popular vote by a substantial margin.
Either Garcia truly believes the nattering nabobs of nonsense narrating conspiracy theories, or he is being disingenuous and is willfully tearing at the foundation of our democracy that lies at the heart of what it means to be an American: the election of our government. If it were to be Congress’ prerogative to override the states’ certified electoral votes, then a party that controlled both the House and Senate could select the president without regard to the voters. Garcia’s plan is not the plan of a patriot.