WASHINGTON — Nearly six weeks after Americans voted Joe Biden the next president, the Electoral College will meet Monday and make President Donald Trump’s electoral loss official.
In statehouses across the country, 538 electors are set to meet to formally cast their votes for either Biden or Trump based on the popular votes in their states.
Biden, the president-elect, and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris are expected to receive 306 electoral votes, topping 232 for Trump. The electoral votes will then be counted at a special joint session of Congress on Jan 6. before Biden and Harris are inaugurated Jan. 20.
Follow along for live updates throughout the day from across the country.
Meetings begin at 10 a.m. ET; here’s what you can expect
The Electoral College meetings, which begin as early as 10 a.m. in a few states, are scheduled for different times throughout the day, and they will be brief. Electors are tasked with simply casting ballots for their candidate and signing six election certificates that will be delivered to Vice President Mike Pence, the president of the Senate, among others.
‘The moment of truth’:The Electoral College prepares to hand Trump the loss he refuses to accept
The meetings are likely to draw protests from Trump supporters at some state capitols and receive extra security. The president has argued, without evidence, that the election was rife with voter fraud and stolen from him, galvanizing his core supporters around his cause. He has lost a barrage of court challenges seeking to overturn the election.
Americans who voted in last month’s presidential election voted to appoint electors pledged for either Democratic nominee Biden, Republican nominee Trump, or nominees of third parties. Those electors formally vote for president, and a state’s population determines how many electors it has.
Shosen by state parties earlier this year, electors are primarily party activists. Those pledged for Trump will convene in states the president won, while Biden electors will meet in states the former vice president carried, based on the certified election results in each state.
Trump failed to convince state lawmakers in states he lost like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia to certify their own separate slates of Trump electors. It means Monday will lack the drama of competing slates of electors casting votes, spoiling a dubious legal strategy pursued by the Trump team.
Minimizing more chance for suspense, the Supreme Court ruled last year that states can decide whether to prohibit so-called “faithless” electors who buck the will of the voters and their party. Thirty-two states bind the electors’ votes.
Recognizing defeat in the Electoral College, Trump and his allies are eying Jan. 6 in their final far-fetched effort to overturn the election. Some House Republicans have signaled plans to contest slates of electors submitted by battleground states like Pennsylvania and Georgia. But they would need support from a senator to have their objections considered. The two chambers would meet separately to entertain any objections.
— Joey Garrison
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