Illegally Contesting the Electoral College Count: the Case for Treason

The Constitution is absolutely clear on the Electoral College Count. Article II, Section 3 states: “The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the votes shall then be counted. The person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such number be a Majority of the whole Number of Electors appointed.” As president of the Senate, Vice President Mike Pence’s only charge is to open the certificate envelopes and have the certificate votes counted. The only possibility of objection is if a certificate is illegible or clearly counterfeit. At the count, there is no room for contesting the validity of the vote certified by the states. Nor is there room for disputing that Joe Biden has the majority of the electors once the count is made and confirms such majority.

If any Republican senators and representatives contest the Electoral College Count on the grounds of electoral fraud, they are mistaken regarding the time and place of their challenge. Any challenge to the vote of any particular state must be made in the courts of that state, with solid evidence supporting the challenge and in timely fashion. A court challenge without supporting evidence is frivolous, in bad faith, and will be dismissed. That is exactly what has happened to every single Republican challenge in the current presidential election.

Given that various Republican senators and representatives have declared that they will nevertheless challenge certificates of various states on the grounds of a fraudulent vote, they are clearly in bad faith on two counts: first, they know Republican challenges to the same states’ voting have been repeatedly dismissed by the courts of law for lack of supporting evidence; and second, they know that the venue for any such challenges is in state courts, not in Congress. It follows that their objective in contesting the Electoral College Count is not to legally challenge the underlying vote, but to obstruct the legal count of the certificates. Such obstruction would be in violation of the Constitution, which they have sworn to uphold.

If those Republicans follow through with obstructing the Electoral College Count, not only are they violating the Constitution, they are intentionally undermining the democratic process while dishonestly promoting and inciting public distrust in our democracy. In other words, they are committing the most serious of all violations of the Constitution, which was written precisely to install and defend democracy. Such violation can properly be characterized as an act of treason. In fact, undermining our democracy is exactly the goal of the enemies of the United States and of democracy worldwide.

Article III, Section 3 states: “Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.” “Adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid” is exactly what the Republicans would be doing by illegally contesting the Electoral College Count. Sowing discord by claiming an election was vitiated by fraud with no evidence and having those claims repeatedly rejected by courts of law, and following up with illegally obstructing the Electoral College Count is not only evidence of bad faith, but of a clear intent to undermine our democracy. Undermining our democracy is not only a betrayal of our nation and our Constitution; it helps the enemies of democracy, foreign and domestic. It logically follows that Republican senators and representatives illegally obstructing the Electoral College Count should not only be impeached and removed for violating their oath to defend the Constitution, they should also be indicted for treason.

© Edward Sonnino 2021

January 5, 2021


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Edward Sonnino

Edward Sonnino

Born and raised in New York City. Best course in college: history of art. Profession: economic forecaster and portfolio manager. Fluent in French and Italian.