203 Republicans try to vote down Electoral Count Act change to make it harder to overthrow election

All but 11 Republicans voted down a measure in the House of Representatives to reform the Electoral Count Act to make sure that the presidential election results cannot be overthrown.

Republican Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming co-sponsored the legislation with Democratic Representative Zoe Lofgren. Both members sit on the House select committee to investigate riot at the US Capitol on January 6.

The Electoral Count Act of 1887 came into focus on 6 January of last year after former president Donald Trump pressured then-vice president Mike Pence to overthrow the results of the 2020 presidential election, which Mr Pence then rebuffed.

Among other provisions, the legislation specifically says that the power of the president of the Senate – the official role of the vice president of the United States – or whoever else presides such as the president of the Senate such as the president pro tempore “is ministerial.”

“Except with respect to the procedures described in this section, the presiding officer shall not have any power to determine or otherwise resolve disputes concerning the proper list of electors for a State, the validity of electors for a State, or the votes of electors of a State,” the legislation states. “Except as provided for in this section, the presiding officer shall not order any delay in counting or preside over any period of delay in counting electoral votes.”

But only 11 Republicans voted to pass the legislation. Along with Ms Cheney, Representatives Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, Chris Jacobs of New York, Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio, Jaime Herrera Beutler of Washington, John Katko of New York, Peter Meijer of Michigan, Tom Rice of South Carolina and Fred Upton of California voted to pass the legislation.

All but one of them voted to impeach Mr Trump for his actions on January 6, while Mr Jacobs voted to object to the 2020 presidential election results. But none of them will return to Congress in January. Mr Kinzinger, Mr Jacobs, Mr Gonazalez, Mr Upton and Mr Katko all decided not to run for re-election. Meanwhile, Ms Cheney, Mr Meijer, Ms Herrera Beutler and Mr Rice all lost their primaries.

The Senate has worked on its own version of the legislation, led by Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine and Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia.

But Congress is on limited time as many members will likely go home during the October recess to campaign and return only briefly after the election to handle unfinished business.

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