Senator-elect Roger Marshall joins GOP effort to block certification of presidential election results

Rafael Garcia
Topeka Capital-Journal
U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall, who will be sworn in as a U.S. senator on Sunday, joined 10 other Republicans on Saturday in announcing they would seek to block certification of the Electoral College vote unless Congress agrees to hold an emergency 10-day audit of voting results from disputed states that voted for President-elect Joe Biden.

U.S. Rep. Roger Marshall, soon to be Kansas’s junior U.S. senator, on Saturday announced he would join 10 other Republican senators in voting to block the Electoral College certification process on Wednesday unless Congress conducts an emergency 10-day audit of election returns in several disputed states.

In a joint statement, Republican U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz, Ron Johnson, James Lankford, Steve Daines, John Kennedy, Marsha Blackburn and Mike Braun, and Senators-elect Cynthia Lummis, Marshall, Bill Hagerty and Tommy Tuberville cited claims of voter fraud and electoral law violations in seeking to disrupt the formal certification of the Electoral College results, set for Wednesday.

The Republican senators further called for Congress to immediately appoint an electoral commission and give it full investigatory and fact-finding authority to conduct a 10-day audit of results in several states that voted for Democratic President-elect Joe Biden.

The senators indicated they would vote to reject electoral votes from those states unless that emergency audit is completed.

“We are not naïve,” the senators and senators-elect said in the statement. “We fully expect most if not all Democrats, and perhaps more than a few Republicans, to vote otherwise. But support of election integrity should not be a partisan issue. A fair and credible audit-conducted expeditiously and completed well before January 20-would dramatically improve Americans' faith in our electoral process and would significantly enhance the legitimacy of whoever becomes our next President. We owe that to the People.”

In a personal statement posted to social media Saturday afternoon, Marshall, an obstetrician, said he based his decision to vote against certification on the years of experience he’d had talking to patients in difficult clinical situations.

He said he had spent much time carefully weighing evidence he claimed showed electoral inconsistencies, and that he was not confident elections in other states had been conducted in compliance with state and federal laws.

“A good physician always listens to the patient’s symptoms and concerns, the relevant facts, and then gives a diagnosis and treatment plan,” he said. “This election was no different. We must hold accountable any state that disregarded the law and our Constitution. The bottom line is, transparency and integrity in the voting and counting process are vitally important, and the American people must have full confidence in the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. I look forward to the debates next week.”

The senators’ move is unlikely to actually block certification of the Electoral College votes on Wednesday, since a majority of senators and U.S. representatives would need to vote to block certification in their respective chambers. Democrats will retain control of the House after the 117th Congress is sworn in Sunday, and some Republican senators have been highly critical of attempts to delegitimize Biden's electoral victory.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has urged other Republican senators to resist joining growing numbers of Republican representatives in protesting Wednesday's certification, but Sen Josh Hawley last week became the first senator to announce he would vote against certification.

Since losing the Nov. 3 election, President Donald Trump’s campaign has sought to overturn the results of that election, filing dozens of lawsuits claiming several irregularities and voter and electoral fraud. The campaign has lost virtually all of those lawsuits and, to date, has been unable to provide any substantiated evidence of fraud.

Biden is set to be sworn in as the 46th president on Jan. 20.