Texas Republican Rep. Chip Roy objected to the seating of lawmakers from Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Arizona and Georgia during the House of Representatives opening session Sunday.
President-elect Joe Biden won all six states in November, but Republicans, including President Donald Trump, have made unfounded allegations that widespread voter fraud occurred in each. Roy argued that if there was widespread voter fraud that altered the outcome of the presidential election, then the legitimacy of the down-ballot races which some of his colleagues won should be called into question as well.
His attempt to prevent certain lawmakers from being seated was objected to by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, and a vote to seat the members from the states in question passed 371-2.
Roy, however, said that his goal was not to single out any group of lawmakers, but to maintain a sense of consistency regarding allegations of election fraud.
“Such allegations – if true – raise significant doubts about the elections of at least some of the members of the United States House of Representatives that, if not formally addressed, could cast a dark cloud of suspicion over the validity of this body for the duration of the 117th Congress,” Roy said in a statement Sunday.
“After all, those representatives were elected through the very same systems – with the same ballot procedures, with the same signature validations, with the same broadly applied decisions of executive and judicial branch officials – as were the electors chosen for the President of the United States under the laws of those states, which have become the subject of national controversy,” he added.
“If we are to adequately address the controversy that currently surrounds our presidential elections, then we owe it to the American people to be consistent in our dealings to that end. Anything less would strip the current efforts of their legitimacy and make it look like a political stunt, rather than a good-faith effort to restore confidence in our electoral process.”
Roy also said on Sunday that he would oppose some of his colleagues’ efforts to overturn Biden’s victory in Congress.
I am as outraged as anyone about the still-unanswered questions about the election. But the Constitution is clear:
States select electors. Congress does not.
— Rep. Chip Roy (@RepChipRoy) January 3, 2021
“The text of the Constitution is clear,” he said in a separate statement. “States select electors. Congress does not… We must respect the states’ authority here.”