On Dec. 14, in a historic move, Republican electors in seven key battleground states cast votes for President Donald Trump. The move was intended to protect Trump's legal claim for the election as he pursues legal means to challenge the outcome.
The exceptional action was executed by Republican electors in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Nevada, Wisconsin, Arizona, and New Mexico.
Meshawn Maddock, Michigan Republican at-large national elector, remarked that sending more than one slate of electors is not unheard of, adding, "It's our duty to the people of Michigan and to the U.S. Constitution to send another slate of electors if the election is in controversy or dispute—and clearly it is."
The Pennsylvania GOP cited the 1960 presidential election between Richard Nixon and John F. Kennedy as the rationale behind their procedural vote. Pennsylvania Trump Campaign Chairman Bernie Comfort said in a statement, "We took this procedural vote to preserve any legal claims that may be preserved going forward."
In Georgia, David Shafer, the chairman of the state's Republican Party, said that because the President's lawsuit contesting the Georgia election is still pending, the Republican nominees for presidential elector met on Monday at the State Capitol and cast their vote for President and Vice President. Shafer tweeted, "Had we not met today and cast our votes, the President's pending election contest would have been effectively mooted. Our action today preserves his rights under Georgia law."
The Nevada GOP announced on Monday that history was being made as Michael J. McDonald, State Chairman of the Republican Party, led electors in casting Nevada's six electoral votes for President Trump and Vice President Pence. The party tweeted, "We believe in fair elections and will continue the fight against voter fraud in the Silver State!"
Andrew Hitt, Chairman of the Republican Party of Wisconsin, released the following statement on Monday, "While President Trump's campaign continues to pursue legal options for Wisconsin, Republican electors met today in accordance with statutory guidelines to preserve our role in the electoral process with the final outcome still pending in the courts."
The 11 electors in the Arizona Republican Party paused for a moment of prayer on Monday before casting their vote for President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, asking for the Lord to watch over our nation and give our leaders wisdom and courage. On Wednesday, the party tweeted "There is no "president elect" or "vice president elect" until January 6, 2021, when Congress convenes to count and certify the electoral votes from all 50 States."
The Republican Party of New Mexico released a statement on Monday, saying, "As the legal proceedings arising from the November 3 presidential election continue to work their way through our nation's judicial system, we requested that the New Mexico Republicans who pledged to vote for President Trump and Vice President Pence in the Electoral College to convene on December 14, cast their ballots and send them to Congress, where the Electoral votes are to be opened and counted beginning on January 6."
The next step in the 2020 presidential election will occur on Jan. 6, 2021, when Congress meets to validate the election. According to the Epoch Times, "The dueling sets will likely trigger a contested electoral vote count in Congress. Each slate of electors can be challenged with the approval of one member of the House and one senator. Both chambers of Congress would then retire to debate and vote on the slate. Depending on the outcome of the Senate runoffs in Georgia, Trump would require near-unanimous support in the Senate to block the approval of Biden’s electors."