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Carl doubles down on vote to challenge to Electoral College results

Both the Arizona and Pennsylvania objections were rejected by both chambers of Congress.

Alabama Congressman Jerry Carl, R-Alabama, outside his office after being sworn for his first term in Congress.

Congressman Jerry Carl, R-Alabama, on Thursday said he voted to challenge the electors from Arizona and Pennsylvania because he felt there was “overwhelming evidence of voter fraud and election irregularities in both states.”

“After significant research into the numerous complaints of voter fraud and irregularities in both Arizona and Pennsylvania, I became convinced it was necessary for me to exercise my Constitutional duty to challenge the slate of electors from these two states,” Carl said in a statement. “This was a decision I did not come to without through [sic] investigation and research, but the evidence of a significant lack of election integrity in both Arizona and Pennsylvania cannot be tolerated.”

More than 60 courts have considered lawsuits by the Trump campaign challenging the integrity of the election results in Arizona, Pennsylvania and other states including Nevada, Wisconsin, Michigan and Georgia. No court, even judges appointed by Trump, has found sufficient cause to issue any order rejecting the election results or even ordering a delay in certification.

The Congress was considering the Arizona objection when an angry mob numbering over 40,000 overwhelmed the undermanned and unprepared Capitol Police. The mob stormed the U.S. Capitol Building, fought with police, and began beating on the doors of the House chambers to get in. A member of the Capitol Police was killed in the fighting. A rioter, Ashli Babbitt, was shot dead in the fighting while breaking through a window. Three other people died of medical emergencies, including Kevin Greeson of Athens.

Carl said in his statement that there was evidence of voter fraud and irregularities in Arizona and Pennsylvania including “numerous verified witnesses and elected officials.” Carl said that Arizona’s election officials refused to allow the inspection of signed envelopes or images of signed envelopes containing mail-in ballots, and multiple witnesses say legal observers were not allowed to observe the verification of signatures at the Maricopa County Tabulation Center. Carl also claimed that observers were forced to sit at a table far from the computer monitors and were told to use binoculars to read the screens.

Carl also claimed that Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court altered the state’s election law just seven weeks before the general election by deciding that mail-in ballots could be counted up to three days after Election Day, when state law provided that all mail-in ballots must be received by 8 p.m. on Election Night.

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Carl added that the state Supreme Court also ruled that ballots without a postmark would be counted and signatures on the mail-in ballots do not need to be counted when state law required ballots to be postmarked appropriately and contain a verified signature.

Carl added that members of Pennsylvania’s State Senate expressed their grave concerns to the U.S. Congress in a Jan. 5, 2021, letter, asking Congress to “delay certification of the Electoral College to allow due process as we pursue election integrity in our Commonwealth.”

Amid the assault on the Capitol Building, members were rushed down the stairs to the basement where they could be evacuated using the tunnel system in the Capitol complex while the Capitol Police stood with guns drawn to cover their retreat as members of the mob beat on the doors to the House Chambers. The doors held only because members of Congress and their staff stacked furniture in front of all the entrances. The rioters would eventually occupy both the House and Senate chambers and much of the Capitol Building including Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s offices.

Over a thousand law enforcement officers from dozens of federal, state and local agencies including the National Guard descended on the Capitol Complex to restore law and order. The building was eventually cleared of rioters and marauders.

The mayor of D.C. declared a 6 p.m. curfew. Police and military forces cleared the area of rioters, protestors and anybody else who did not need to be there. Law enforcement searched the building for bombs. Two pipe bombs were found at both the Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee buildings in Washington. Both devices were safely detonated by the Washington Metropolitan Police Department bomb squad.

Now protected by overwhelming police and military presence, Congress could return to work. Much of the support for the objections, especially in the Senate, evaporated. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, who has been Trump’s de facto floor leader for most of his presidency, said that there was no evidence of massive voter fraud and that Congress should accept the rulings of the courts.

Both the Arizona and Pennsylvania objections were rejected by both chambers of Congress. Members of the House objected to other states as well, but without a senator to also make an objection, those objections weren’t considered. In the early hours of Thursday morning, Vice President Mike Pence declared that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris had won the 2020 election.

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Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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