SPONSORED:

Senate GOP opposition grows to objecting to Electoral College results

A growing number of Senate Republicans are formally coming out against challenging the Electoral College results Wednesday, underscoring that the long shot effort is guaranteed to fail even in the GOP-controlled chamber. 

GOP Sens. Kevin CramerKevin John CramerBiden administration faces big decision on whether to wade into Dakota Access fight OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Supreme Court declines to hear challenge to Obama marine monument designation | Interior reverses course on tribal ownership of portion of Missouri river | White House climate adviser meets with oil and gas companies Senate GOP pushes back on list of participants in oil and gas leasing forum MORE (N.D.), John HoevenJohn Henry HoevenOVERNIGHT ENERGY: Supreme Court declines to hear challenge to Obama marine monument designation | Interior reverses course on tribal ownership of portion of Missouri river | White House climate adviser meets with oil and gas companies Senate GOP pushes back on list of participants in oil and gas leasing forum Small cities fret over feds redefining metro areas MORE (N.D.) and Shelly Moore Capito (W.Va.) — three Republicans from states where President TrumpDonald TrumpHarry Reid reacts to Boehner book excerpt: 'We didn't mince words' Man arrested for allegedly threatening to stab undercover Asian officer in NYC Trump says GOP will take White House in 2024 in prepared speech MORE is deeply popular — said Monday that they will not support challenges to the election results during this week's joint session, where Congress will formally count the votes.

Hoeven, who is up for reelection in 2022, said in a statement that his constituents "do not want Congress to determine their vote, and we should not set the precedent by doing it for other states."

ADVERTISEMENT

"I do not plan to object. Additionally, the courts, not Congress, are responsible for resolving any electoral disputes and any irregularities should be adjudicated through the courts. This is what the Constitution outlines and that is how we should proceed," Hoeven added.

Cramer, who was elected in 2018, said he shared concerns with those who planned to object. "The Founding Fathers did not design a system where the federal legislative branch could reject a state’s certified choice for President in favor of their own," he said.

“In light of these concerns, I will not object to the Electoral College votes when they are counted, and – unless overwhelmingly persuasive evidence is presented before the Senate when we debate the objections – I will not vote to reject the results," he added. 

Capito in her own statement warned that allegations of fraud, probed by state-led investigations and in dozens of court cases, don't come "anywhere close to the standard for rejecting a state’s electoral votes"

“Several of my congressional colleagues have made clear their plans to object to counting certified electoral votes from certain states. I will oppose their effort because the will of voters in each state — not political considerations or the individual preferences of senators and representatives — must determine the winner of the presidential election," she added.

ADVERTISEMENT

The statements from Capito and Cramer come after Sen. Rob PortmanRobert (Rob) Jones PortmanTo encourage innovation, Congress should pass two bills protecting important R&D tax provision The Hill's Morning Report - Biden assails 'epidemic' of gun violence amid SC, Texas shootings Biden-GOP infrastructure talks off to rocky start MORE (R-Ohio), who is up for reelection in 2022 and like Capito an adviser to GOP leaders, announced earlier Monday that he also could not support efforts to overturn President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden eyes bigger US role in global vaccination efforts Trump says GOP will take White House in 2024 in prepared speech Kemp: Pulling All-Star game out of Atlanta will hurt business owners of color MORE's win Wednesday, when conservatives are expected to challenge key battleground states. 

GOP Sens. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamMSNBC's Joy Reid pans Manchin, Sinema as the 'no progress caucus' Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists Biden defense budget criticized by Republicans, progressives alike MORE (S.C.) and Tom CottonTom Bryant CottonMcConnell, GOP slam Biden's executive order on SCOTUS Overnight Defense: Biden proposes 3B defense budget | Criticism comes in from left and right | Pentagon moves toward new screening for extremists POW/MIA flag moved back atop White House MORE (Ark.), two close allies of Trump's, also said on Sunday that they would not support efforts to overturn the election. 

More than 100 House Republicans have been estimated to support the effort. Sen. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerGeorgia's top election official looks to shake political drama Collins hits Warnock after All-Star Game pulled: 'Thanks for nothing' High anxiety over Trump in Georgia GOP MORE (R-Ga.), meanwhile, on Monday became the 13th Republican senator to back the challenge. Loeffler's decision comes hours before Trump will rally in Georgia ahead of Tuesday's runoff elections that will determine which party controls the Senate majority.  

Senate GOP leadership isn't formally leaning on its members to oppose objecting to the election results, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellHarry Reid reacts to Boehner book excerpt: 'We didn't mince words' Democrats see opportunity in GOP feud with business Biden resists calls to give hard-hit states more vaccines than others MORE (R-Ky.) urged his caucus in a call last month to not object because it could force politically tough votes. 

Trump and some of his closest allies have claimed for weeks that the election was "rigged," a claim rejected in dozens of court cases and by election experts who have shot down claims of widespread voter fraud. Then-Attorney General William BarrBill BarrDominion: Ex-Michigan state senator 'sowing discord in our democracy' with election fraud claims Hunter Biden says he doesn't know if Delaware laptop was his Gaetz showed lawmakers nude photos of women he claimed to have slept with: report MORE also said last month that they had found no widespread voter fraud that could change the outcome of the election.

ADVERTISEMENT

Capito, in her statement, warned that refusing to count a state's votes "in the absence of such evidence would disenfranchise millions of American voters and call into question the very foundation of representative government enshrined in our Constitution."

“The 2020 presidential election is over. Our country should unite," she added. 

Cramer added that he had received "overwhelming outreach" from constituents in his deeply red state urging him to object on Wednesday but that couldn't "in good conscience cast a vote to disenfranchise millions of Americans by overturning the Electoral College results in these states without sufficient evidence or clear constitutional authority."

"While I am not pleased with the outcome of the election, objecting to the Electoral College votes is not an appropriate or effective way to change the results," he said.

Updated at 8:12 p.m.