Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., says the process of counting Electoral College votes must be reformed to avoid the abolishment of the college itself.
Paul, in an opinion column for the Louisville Courier Journal, wrote that the Electoral College "is a friend to those who believe in limited government and our federalist system. We must save it."
"Recent elections uncovered defects in Congress’s interaction with the Electoral College," Paul wrote in Monday’s column. "Federal law currently leaves ambiguous the role of the Vice President in counting electoral votes and allows an incredibly low threshold — just one member of the House and Senate — to object to a state’s election results."
Although Paul said both major parties have been guilty of exploiting the college’s shortcomings, he added that "the theater act" went too far in 2021.
"It culminated in a mob disrupting the joint session of Congress to certify the presidential election," Paul wrote. "At the time, I wrote that a vote to overturn the election would doom the Electoral College forever.
"A misguided effort to curry short-term favor with political allies could have resulted in the destruction of the institution our Founders devised to ensure that the voice of every American across our vast country is heard."
Paul is promoting the bipartisan Electoral Count Reform and Presidential Transition Improvement Act "to ensure that Congress obeys state law."
The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, was presented in response to former President Donald Trump's claim that then-Vice President Mike Pence had the power to not count certain votes in the 2020 election.
"Unless the laws or Constitution of a state identify another official to do so, the reformed Electoral Count Act designates the governor to certify the state’s presidential electors to prevent different officials from sending competing slates of electors to Congress," Paul wrote.
"Additionally, the bill makes clear that the Vice President is to play a solely ministerial role in the counting of electoral votes."
The bill also would require one-fifth of each the House and Senate to trigger a congressional debate on objections to a state’s election results.
"In other words, this legislation preserves the Founders’ intent that the laws and election results of the several states are respected," Paul wrote.
"Conservatives should realize that reforming the Electoral Count Act is necessary to protect the Electoral College from left-wing attempts to abandon it completely.”
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said last week that he expected the Electoral Count Reform Act to be included in the end-of-year omnibus spending package to fund the government, The Hill reported.
Former Secretary of State and Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., are among those who have called for the Electoral College to be abolished.
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