(JustPatriots.com)- The bipartisan group of senators working on reforming the 1887 Electoral Count Act has cobbled together a general framework agreement and has begun writing the legislative text amending the act.
The senators met last Wednesday to discuss changes to the law that governs how Congress counts and certifies the Electoral College votes after each presidential election.
Republican Senator Susan Collins, one of the members of the group, said last Thursday that they had resolved most of the issues and were already drafting language that would clearly define the role of the Vice President in the process of counting Electoral College votes as “ministerial.”
The group is also drafting new language that would raise the threshold for triggering a challenge to a state’s Electoral slate, raising it from one member in each chamber to 20 percent of the members in each chamber. There would then be a majority vote to sustain the challenge.
In addition to that, the group also reached an agreement on permitting federal grants from the Help America Vote Act to be used for increased security at polling places and elections offices.
West Virginia Democrat Senator Joe Manchin praised Senator Collins for putting together this group of bipartisan lawmakers, telling reporters that Wednesday’s meeting was very productive and he was confident “we’ll do something good.”
Advocates have argued that the Electoral Count Act of 1887 fails to provide clear guidance on the role Congress plays in certifying the Electoral College vote. They claim that this lack of clarity created the circumstances that led to the 3-hour riot at the Capitol on January 6 when Trump supporters tried to stop Congress from certifying the election.
Ohio Republican Senator Rob Portman said minor differences remain in the bipartisan effort, but he hopes those will be worked out before the July recess.
The news of this bipartisan agreement has set off a firestorm of anger among those who continue to believe that Vice President Pence had the power to reject individual states’ Electoral College vote.