WASHINGTON — While the majority of Maryland’s congressional delegation – all Democrats — acknowledge Joe Biden’s victory in the presidential election, the state’s sole Republican representative plans to object to certifying the election Wednesday, backing President Donald Trump’s unfounded election fraud claims.
Rep. Andy Harris, R-01, joins a group of House Republicans who have said that they will object to certifying some states’ Electoral College votes, citing “lingering, serious and uninvestigated” election concerns, during a joint session of Congress.
“I am shocked that judges have not ordered investigations when legitimate concerns have been raised in lawsuits,” Harris said. “If there is nothing to hide, why not allow thorough transparent investigations? Who would be against that? I hope that’s answered in (Wednesday’s) debate.”
Maryland Democrats, however, expressed frustration with their Republican colleagues’ unsubstantiated claims of election fraud.
Sen. Benjamin Cardin, D-Md., cited the 2020 election’s record-breaking voter turnout and said that it “was a fair and free election.”
“Not liking the results does not mean it is a fraudulent election,” Cardin said in a statement. “My congressional colleagues who are objecting to the Electoral College results without any evidence or legal basis must stop coddling President Trump’s ego. They must remember their oath is to the Constitution and not the president.”
Sen. Jamie Raskin, D-08, whose son Thomas Raskin died on New Year’s Eve, “received a bipartisan standing ovation from members of both parties before he began to speak” in the galleries and on the floor. Raskin placed his hand on his heart “repeatedly,” according to a pool report.
Sen. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said that America and “a majority of voters in Frederick County” elected Biden. He labeled objectors “political arsonists” trying “to set fire to the infrastructure of our democracy.
“Attempts to overturn the will of the American people and our democratic process will not succeed. I urge all of my colleagues to stand up for what’s right and vote to certify President-elect Biden’s win,” Van Hollen Jr. said.
Rep. Anthony Brown, D-04, also will vote to affirm the Electoral College results that give Biden the presidency.
“The planned challenges are not grounded in fact and push conspiracies in an effort to primarily disenfranchise communities of color and overturn the results of a free and fair election,” his press secretary said.
Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, D-02., expressed frustration at the objectors and their claims of election fraud.
“Every state in the nation has certified its election result, some following audits and even hand counts. The results have been upheld by judges around the country, including the Supreme Court, more than 60 times and the President’s own Attorney General has rejected false claims of fraud,” Ruppersberger said. “Enough is enough.”
Rep. Trone, D-06, responded to objectors, saying, in part, “It is a sad day for democracy” and that objectors’ actions are “upsetting and dangerous.”
“Since he came into office, President Trump’s abuse of power and disregard for democratic norms has been on full display, the latest through his attempts to coerce state officials to change the certified results of the election in Georgia,” Trone said. “It’s absolutely disheartening to see Republicans in Congress acquiesce to and join in on these antidemocratic antics from the president.”
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-05, echoed his Democratic colleagues’ calls that objection is undemocratic and expressed concern for the future of democracy during a Tuesday press conference.
“Sadly, unfortunately, a significant faction of the Republican Party and the Republican Party as a whole and its leaders have refused to honor the outcome of a vote for President of the United States and Vice President of the United States,” Hoyer said. “They are undermining the confidence of the American people in our democracy, which I believe to be a process and performance that puts party and President above country.”