A letter was sent on Friday by dozens of Pennsylvania legislators calling on state congressional leaders to challenge Pennsylvania’s 2020 election results before the U.S. Congress meets on January 6 to count votes.
Two additional letters – one to the Attorney General calling for the appointment of an independent prosecutor to review the election process, and another to the Inspector General calling for a full review of the State Department’s handling of the election – were also signed by dozens of state legislators.
In the meantime, the letter addressed to congressmen and signed by 75 members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly has been removed from the Pennsylvania Republican Caucus website after some members stated that their signatures were added in error.
In the letter originally addressed to Congressional legislators on Friday, the members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly pointed out the changes made by election officials in the collection and counting of ballots, which they believed were in conflict with the 2019 agreed-upon revisions to the state’s electoral code. One change that was challenged in the letter was the decision to extend the time during which voting officials could receive postal ballots, a change that was introduced in response to the influx of postal ballots due to the coronavirus pandemic. The letter also claims that election observers were prevented from “meaningfully observing” the counting process of the ballots.
In a press release issued by the Pennsylvania House House Republican Caucus, the majority leader of the House of Representatives, Kerry Benninghoff, admitted that Republicans in the state House of Representatives could not directly intervene in the election results, but encouraged state congressmen to do so.
“Although constitutionally we cannot act as a legislature at this time to resolve these issues, there are measures that can be taken to ensure that the integrity of our election is preserved and the voice of Pennsylvanians is heard,” Benninghoff said in the press release. “I hope that law enforcement agencies and our members of Congress will receive these letters with the seriousness and concern they deserve to ensure that the rule of law is upheld and that the people of Pennsylvania truly have access to free, fair and secure elections.
In the release, Pennsylvania House of Representatives Speaker Bryan Cutler also spoke out against what he said was an “activist court” that had created “confusion and delays” for voters as a result of the changes associated with the November 3 election. “These letters are a continuation of the measures the legislature has been taking for months to restore our electoral law and public confidence in our electoral process,” Cutler said.
On Friday afternoon, a reporter from Pennsylvania Capital-Star reported that at least five signatories said their names were erroneously added to the letter addressed to congressional leaders. One of the state representatives, Chris Quinn, confirmed to Washington Newsday that his signature should not appear on the letter.
“There was a typo in Harrisburg,” Quinn told Washington Newsday. “They made a mistake and have since withdrawn the letter.”
Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar formally confirmed the results of the state presidential election on November 24. The confirmation means that the 20 votes from Pennsylvania will go to President-elect Joe Biden. The media announced the national race for Biden on November 7, and the General Services Administration officially recognized him as the elected president on November 23.
President Donald Trump has not yet admitted the election. Instead, his campaign filed lawsuits in battlefield states across the country, several of which claimed that votes were illegally cast or counted in Pennsylvania.