America is a Republic whose leaders are chosen in democratic elections. Those elections, in turn, must comply with the Constitution and with federal and state law.
When the voters fairly decide an election, pursuant to the rule of law, the losing candidate should acknowledge and respect the legitimacy of that election. And, if the voters choose to elect a new office-holder, our Nation should have a peaceful transfer of power.
The election of 2020, like the election of 2016, was hard fought and, in many swing states, narrowly decided. The 2020 election, however, featured unprecedented allegations of voter fraud, violations and lax enforcement of election law, and other voting irregularities.
Voter fraud has posed a persistent challenge in our elections, although its breadth and scope are disputed. By any measure, the allegations of fraud and irregularities in the 2020 election exceed any in our lifetimes.
And those allegations are not believed just by one individual candidate. Instead, they are widespread. Reuters/Ipsos polling, tragically, shows that 39% of Americans believe ‘the election was rigged.’ That belief is held by Republicans (67%), Democrats (17%), and Independents (31%).
Some Members of Congress disagree with that assessment, as do many members of the media.
But, whether or not our elected officials or journalists believe it, that deep distrust of our democratic processes will not magically disappear. It should concern us all. And it poses an ongoing threat to the legitimacy of any subsequent administrations.
Ideally, the courts would have heard evidence and resolved these claims of serious election fraud. Twice, the Supreme Court had the opportunity to do so; twice, the Court declined.
On January 6, it is incumbent on Congress to vote on whether to certify the 2020 election results. That vote is the lone constitutional power remaining to consider and force resolution of the multiple allegations of serious voter fraud.
At that quadrennial joint session, there is long precedent of Democratic Members of Congress raising objections to presidential election results, as they did in 1969, 2001, 2005, and 2017. And, in both 1969 and 2005, a Democratic Senator joined with a Democratic House Member in forcing votes in both houses on whether to accept the presidential electors being challenged.
The most direct precedent on this question arose in 1877, following serious allegations of fraud and illegal conduct in the Hayes-Tilden presidential race. Specifically, the elections in three states-Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina-were alleged to have been conducted illegally.
In 1877, Congress did not ignore those allegations, nor did the media simply dismiss those raising them as radicals trying to undermine democracy. Instead, Congress appointed an Electoral Commission-consisting of five Senators, five House Members, and five Supreme Court Justices-to consider and resolve the disputed returns.
We should follow that precedent. To wit, Congress should immediately appoint an Electoral Commission, with full investigatory and fact-finding authority, to conduct an emergency 10-day audit of the election returns in the disputed states. Once completed, individual states would evaluate the Commission’s findings and could convene a special legislative session to certify a change in their vote, if needed.
Accordingly, we intend to vote on January 6 to reject the electors from disputed states as not ‘regularly given’ and ‘lawfully certified’ (the statutory requisite), unless and until that emergency 10-day audit is completed.
We are not naïve. We fully expect most if not all Democrats, and perhaps more than a few Republicans, to vote otherwise. But support of election integrity should not be a partisan issue. A fair and credible audit-conducted expeditiously and completed well before January 20-would dramatically improve Americans’ faith in our electoral process and would significantly enhance the legitimacy of whoever becomes our next President. We owe that to the People.
These are matters worthy of the Congress, and entrusted to us to defend. We do not take this action lightly. We are acting not to thwart the democratic process, but rather to protect it. And every one of us should act together to ensure that the election was lawfully conducted under the Constitution and to do everything we can to restore faith in our Democracy.
A Conservative, in a wheelchair, entered a restaurant one afternoon and asked the waitress for a cup of coffee. The Conservative looked across the restaurant and asked, “Is that Jesus Christ sitting over there?”
The waitress nodded “yes,” so the Conservative requested that she give Jesus a cup of coffee, on him. “Without God, I would have nothing” he said.
The next patron to come in was a Libertarian, with a hunched back. She shuffled over to a booth, painfully sat down, and asked the waitress for a cup of hot tea. She also glanced across the restaurant and asked, “Is that Jesus, over there?”
The waitress nodded, so the Libertarian asked her to give Jesus a cup of hot tea, “Since He blessed this free country, its my treat.”
The third person to come into the restaurant was a Socialist on crutches. He hobbled over to a booth, sat down, and hollered, “How’s about getting me a cold glass of milk?” He too looked across the restaurant and asked, “Isn’t that God’s Boy over there?”
The waitress nodded, so the Socialist asked, “In honor of Jesus being here, is my milk free?”
Then Jesus got up to leave, He passed by the Conservative, touched him, and said, “For your kindness, you are healed.” The Conservative felt the strength come back into his legs, got up, and gracefully danced out the door singing ‘God bless America’.
Jesus passed by the Libertarian, touched her, and said, “For your kindness, you are healed.” The Libertarian felt her back straightening up, and she raised his hands and did a series of back flips out the door shouting, “My burden has been lifted. I am independent”.
Then, Jesus walked towards the Socialist, just smiling.
The Socialist instantly jumped up and yelled, “Don’t touch me … I’m on disability.”
Many people have a confused view about what the Bible says in regards to self-defense. The law given in Exodus 22:2-3 says that if a man breaks into a home to steal at night, the home-owner has the right to kill him in defense. In daylight, when the home-owner can see that he is there to steal and not to kill, he cannot kill the thief in defense. In Luke 22:37-39, Jesus explains it is good to be appropriately armed. In Proverbs 25:21-22 and Romans 12:17, Scriptures say to not repay evil with evil, but to bless your enemies. And in Matthew 5:39, Jesus said if someone slaps your right cheek, offer them your left as well.
The Bible has very few laws regarding self-defense, but plenty of examples. When Lot and his people were captured, Abram had no problem rescuing him with force (Genesis 14:13-16). In Luke 22:36, Jesus advised His disciples to take swords along with their other provisions. Then again, David refused to harm Saul, even though Saul was trying to kill him. And Jesus scolded Peter for using a sword to fight off the guards that were taking Jesus away (John 18:10-11).
What’s the difference? The timing and the situation. In a situation with an unknown aggressor with unknown intent, as in Exodus 22:2, it is okay to use self-defense. If the offense has already occurred, as in Proverbs 25 and Romans 12, we should not take the law into our own hands, but seek justice through the authorities. David refused to kill Saul because Saul was God’s anointed king and authority. Jesus condemned Peter’s action not because of his intent to defend Christ, but because Peter was getting in the way of God’s plan for the guards to take Jesus. The Matthew 5 passage is stickiest. It appears to say that we are to take whatever abuse comes our way quietly. But a “slap on the cheek” didn’t mean physical violence. It refers to an insult against honor. We are not to defend our honor with physical violence, but shrug it off.
Another situation that occasionally comes up is what if a wife is a trained fighter and the husband is not? Should the husband, as protector, defend his wife? Or should he let his wife be the aggressor? Although the Bible allows that women may be involved in battle, the Bible doesn’t speak of this specific scenario. It’s best if the husband and wife talk about this beforehand. They need to know each other’s strengths and determine how to work together before the threat even arises.
These are the examples we should follow—to determine the real threat and wisely act accordingly. It is fine to be armed, but it is better to escape unscathed than to needlessly kill an attacker.
Do you see the ‘biggest two letter word’ in that wise statement?