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Ted Cruz will object to certification of Arizona’s electoral votes

By: - January 5, 2021 2:52 pm

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz at the 2019 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA in West Palm Beach, Florida, in December 2019. Photo by Gage Skidmore | Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz will object to the certification of Arizona’s 11 electoral votes on Wednesday, and he’ll be joined by at least two members of the state’s congressional delegation, despite a total lack of evidence of any fraud or malfeasance.

The Washington Post on Tuesday reported that Cruz, a Texas Republican, will vote against the certification of electoral votes in Arizona, along with the votes from Georgia and Pennsylvania. Cruz is one of 12 Republican senators who have said they plan to object to the certification of electoral votes in several states where President Donald Trump and some supporters have falsely alleged that President-elect Joe Biden won through election fraud.

A number of Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives have also said they’ll vote against certification on Wednesday, including Arizona Congressmen Andy Biggs and Paul Gosar.

Despite there being no credible evidence of fraud Cruz told conservative radio host Mark Levin on Monday that he’s objecting to the certification of the Electoral College “not to set aside the election … but rather to press for the appointment of an electoral commission that can hear the claims of voter fraud, hear the evidence and make a determination as to what the facts are and the extent to which the law was complied with.”

Dozens of state and federal courts in Arizona and across the country have considered those claims and rejected them — in many cases because there wasn’t any evidence to back up the claims.

No one has presented any evidence that Biden won through fraud, in Arizona or in any other disputed state. Trump and many of his allies, such as Biggs, Gosar and Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward, have repeatedly spread unsubstantiated or provably false allegations of fraud.

Speaking on Fox News on Tuesday, Biggs said there are several reasons to contest the election results. He pointed to a judge’s order to extend Arizona’s statutory voter registration deadline, claiming that as many as 150,000 new voters could have registered during that time. However, the Secretary of State’s Office said only about 35,000 new voters were added to the rolls during the extension, with more Republicans than Democrats registering during that time.

Biggs also said judges refused to hear lawsuits from people who claimed to have evidence of fraud or malfeasance in the election. Judges in Arizona have rejected several such lawsuits as completely meritless and defective on other procedural grounds. A federal judge dismissed one lawsuit, for example, that claimed foreign espionage and massive vote rigging, partly based on anonymous sources, partly on the grounds that it was “sorely wanting of relevant or reliable evidence.” 

Trump and his allies have lost nearly all of the 60 lawsuits they’ve filed challenging the election’s results, nine of which were in Arizona. Most of those lawsuits were dismissed. Trump’s campaign has never filed any lawsuits alleging fraud in Arizona.

The president and some of his supporters have fixated on the possibility that Congress could overturn Biden’s win on Tuesday. That is extremely unlikely, given that Democrats control the House of Representatives and several Senate Republicans have publicly expressed their opposition to the idea. 

Some, including Trump, have also touted the idea that Vice President Mike Pence could reject the Biden electors and replace them with alternative slates of Trump electors, though experts say the vice president has no such power. A federal judge in Texas and the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a lawsuit by Congressman Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, and Arizona’s 11 Trump electors asking for the judiciary to affirm that Pence has that authority.

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Jeremy Duda
Jeremy Duda

Associate Editor Jeremy Duda is a Phoenix native and began his career in journalism in 2003 after graduating from the University of Arizona. Prior to joining the Arizona Mirror, he worked at the Arizona Capitol Times, where he spent eight years covering the Governor's Office and two years as editor of the Yellow Sheet Report. Before that, he wrote for the Hobbs News-Sun of Hobbs, NM, and the Daily Herald of Provo, Utah. Jeremy is also the author of the history book “If This Be Treason: the American Rogues and Rebels Who Walked the Line Between Dissent and Betrayal.”