Eight of Pa.’s nine GOP House members say they will oppose certification of state's electors | News | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Eight of Pa.’s nine GOP House members say they will oppose certification of state's electors

click to enlarge President-elect Joe Biden during a campaign stop in Lawrenceville in 2019 - CP PHOTO: JARED WICKERHAM
CP photo: Jared Wickerham
President-elect Joe Biden during a campaign stop in Lawrenceville in 2019
Eight of Pennsylvania’s nine Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives have released a joint statement saying they will oppose the certification of Pennsylvania’s electors when Congress meets to count electoral votes on Jan. 6.

The lawmakers, U.S. Reps. Dan Meuser (R-Luzerne), Scott Perry (R-York), Lloyd Smucker (R-Lancaster), Fred Keller (R-Snyder), John Joyce (R-Altoona), Guy Reschenthaler (R-Peters), Glen ‘GT’ Thompson (R-Oil City), and Mike Kelly, (R-Butler) argued in a joint statement that Gov. Tom Wolf and Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar exceeded their authority by, among other things, allowing counties to accept mail-in ballots that were received after Election Day but were postmarked by Nov. 3.
click to enlarge U.S. Reps. Mike Kelly and Guy Reschenthaler
U.S. Reps. Mike Kelly and Guy Reschenthaler
“These unlawful actions were taken without the authority or consent of the Pennsylvania state legislature. These are facts, and they are indisputable,” the lawmakers said. “Additionally, the Pennsylvania Attorney General did nothing with regard to these unlawful activities. Not one inquiry, no questioning, and certainly no investigations. Not to mention that hundreds, if not thousands, of affidavits outlining election complaints and potential fraud were documented, submitted, and ignored. The Pennsylvania election could be summed up as a free-for-all with no oversight and different standards applied throughout the Commonwealth. It is also very apparent that the unlawful actions described were concentrated in heavily populated, Democrat-led counties.”

U.S. Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) did not sign the letter.

Seven of the eight lawmakers also were among the 126 signatories an amicus brief to a lawsuit, filed by Texas’ attorney general, that sought to throw out election results in key battleground states, including Pennsylvania. State Attorney General Josh Shapiro slammed the lawsuit as “seditious abuse.”

Neither Smucker nor Fitzpatrick signed the amicus brief.

Democrat Joe Biden beat President Donald Trump by more than 80,000 votes to carry the Keystone State and its 20 electoral votes. Wolf and Boockvar have certified the results and the Electoral College awarded the state to Biden when it met in Harrisburg last month. Despite that, Trump and his allies have continued to falsely claim that the race was stolen.

There has been no proof of voter fraud. And all the lawmakers who signed the statement won re-election on Nov. 3 under the same ground rules. They have not contested the results of their own successful campaigns, nor those in the Legislature or statewide row offices that resulted in Republican victories.

Last month, Kelly, a Western Pennsylvania Republican, unsuccessfully petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to set aside Pennsylvania’s election results, a move that would have resulted in the disenfranchisement of hundreds of thousands of voters statewide.

Opposition from Republicans is not expected to derail President-elect Joe Biden’s certification as the next president of the United States. However, it will delay that process when Congress meets in joint session on Jan. 6.

Pennsylvania's Republican Sen. Pat Toomey has condemned the effort by some Republicans to block certification, calling it an effort to “disenfranchise millions of voters in my state and others.”

John Micek is the editor of the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, where this story first appeared.

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