Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) on Wednesday announced he'll object during the Electoral College certification process, which is expected to seal President-elect Joe Biden's victory on Jan. 6.
Hawley said he plans to do so because he's concerned about allegations that "some states, particularly Pennsylvania, failed to follow their own state election laws" and because of what he described as "the unprecedented effort of mega corporations, including Facebook and Twitter, to interfere in this election, in support of" Biden. "At the very least, Congress should investigate allegations of voter fraud and adopt measures to secure the integrity of our elections," he wrote, boosting President Trump's unfounded claims that the election was stolen from him. State election officials and Attorney General William Barr previously affirmed there was no evidence of widespread voter fraud.
Hawley added that he will be following "the same practice" as congressional Democrats in 2004 and 2016. A handful of House Democrats did indeed try to object to Trump's victory in the 2016 election, but only informally as their written complaints did not include the required accompanying signature of a senator. Biden, who was presiding over the certification as then-vice president, wasn't having much of it and grew increasingly impatient with his fellow Democrats.
Several House Republicans are preparing to object this time around, and Hawley is the first senator to join them, though some members of his own party have criticized him for trying to curry favor with Trump because of his own presidential ambitions. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) suggested his caucus refrain from joining the House effort. Tim O'Donnell