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Rep. LaMalfa vows to challenge Electoral certification; Rep. Bentz supports investigation

Congressman Doug LaMalfa of California's North State says that he will join Republican opposition of President-elect Joe Biden's victory in the November election.

Posted: Jan 5, 2021 3:11 PM
Updated: Jan 5, 2021 3:17 PM

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congressman Doug LaMalfa of California's North State says that he will join a growing group of Republican lawmakers in Washington opposing the certification of President-elect Joe Biden's victory "until a Congressional investigation is complete."

Congressman Cliff Bentz, the newly sworn-in representative for southern and eastern Oregon, indicated last month that he would support such an investigation — tweeting that he had joined some of his colleagues in the House "in asking for a Congressional investigation and review" of election irregularities.

President Donald Trump has increasingly rallied Republican lawmakers to challenge the legitimacy of the November election in battleground states carried by Biden, citing reports of alleged voter fraud — but those claims have failed to gain traction in the nation's courts.

Rep. LaMalfa made clear on Tuesday that he views the inability of fraud claims to prevail in court as a failure of the courts themselves — and "some sloppy lawyer work" by Trump's legal team — rather than a reflection on the legitimacy of those claims.

"Because the courts at all levels have sidestepped their duty to the Republic, there is no other alternative than to use the power of Congress to investigate and hopefully get to the truth," LaMalfa said. "I wish the courts had followed their constitutional obligation to be the neutral fact finder, but they failed."

LaMalfa said that he would join Senator Ted Cruz and other Republicans in challenging the Electoral College certification until there is an investigation into fraud claims.

Despite his earlier statement in support of an investigation, Rep. Bentz has not explicitly stated that he will also oppose the Electoral certification. A few days after joining the call for an investigation, Bentz posted a document from the Congressional Research Service that indicated such a challenge may be entirely toothless.

When the Electoral votes are opened and observed in a joint session of Congress on Wednesday, the research states, lawmakers can object to the results from any state if supported by at least one Senator and one Representative. Upon any such objection, the House and Senate must separate and hear up to two hours of debate on the objection.

But once the two-hour debate is over, each chamber votes to agree or disagree by simple majority. Democrats maintain the majority in the House, and there has been no indication as of yet that there are enough Republican Senators who support challenging Electoral certification to gain a majority in the Senate.

If the document cited by Bentz holds true, the best that lawmakers like LaMalfa can hope for is a delay of the election results rather than overturning the outcome or forcing a Congressional investigation.

“I did not come to this decision lightly, and weighed carefully the constitutional issues, potential damage to the electoral college system, and further division of our country," LaMalfa said. "Most important, the American people deserve the truth, no matter how inconvenient or ugly."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 387485

Reported Deaths: 5116
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah59768836
Washington41571393
Marion39592504
Clackamas32426376
Lane29856354
Jackson24672350
Deschutes23182185
Umatilla15087180
Linn14488178
Douglas13236286
Josephine10057240
Yamhill9665142
Klamath8979145
Polk813698
Benton605137
Malheur591586
Coos5573106
Columbia423855
Jefferson416865
Lincoln357252
Union336854
Crook330156
Wasco314846
Clatsop258335
Baker217531
Tillamook214345
Hood River211337
Morrow197025
Curry190136
Harney119332
Grant108314
Lake104016
Wallowa74713
Sherman1903
Gilliam1844
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5060666

Reported Deaths: 74152
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles152491227121
San Diego4047084319
Riverside3849455306
San Bernardino3718825944
Orange3329505675
Sacramento1674002423
Kern1565171781
Fresno1558992246
Santa Clara1511691922
Alameda1246581504
San Joaquin1070001833
Ventura1036461188
Contra Costa1032921045
Stanislaus912991413
Tulare856141082
San Francisco56614669
San Mateo56058629
Monterey52340625
Solano47422356
Santa Barbara47035548
Merced44807664
Sonoma42912412
Placer41881468
Imperial38128769
Kings35038358
San Luis Obispo31294358
Madera26005311
Shasta25917440
Butte25295309
Santa Cruz22028222
Yolo21451257
Marin18342248
El Dorado18166161
Sutter14494181
Napa13372104
Yuba1070088
Tehama10230129
Humboldt10043117
Nevada9914103
Mendocino848894
Lassen792355
San Benito775977
Tuolumne767790
Lake6990110
Amador573766
Siskiyou470954
Glenn455136
Calaveras435685
Del Norte371242
Colusa323519
Inyo254345
Plumas19127
Mono18294
Mariposa156718
Trinity98817
Modoc7475
Unassigned2430
Sierra2170
Alpine1060
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