UW-Madison political science professor explains how objections to Electoral College results affects Wednesday’s process

MADISON, Wis.– Several Republican Senators said they will reject the Electoral College results in Congress, unless a ten-day audit is conducted, according to a statement.

Those expected objections to the final tally has University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Director of the Election Research Center, Barry Burden, thinking it could be a long night for Congress and Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday.

“It’s going to be mostly a position-taking exercise for these Republican Senators,” Burden said. “That objection could trigger a process that either slows down or really complicates declaring Joe Biden the victor in the election.”

Senators are asking for a ten-day audit of the results prior to the count, but Burden said there isn’t even enough time, let alone information to make that happen.

“We are not naïve. We fully expect most if not all Democrats, and perhaps more than a few Republicans to vote otherwise,” a statement on Sen. Ted Cruz’s website said. “But support of election integrity should not be a partisan issue.”

Burden said the statement from several Republican Senators, including Wisconsin’s Sen. Ron Johnson, doesn’t point to any credible facts of election fraud.

“It doesn’t name any specific problems that happened in the states. It simply refers to allegations,” Burden said.

Johnson attempted to name what some of those allegations are on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday morning, but was cut off by moderator Chuck Todd for lack of factual evidence.

Burden said he is surprised to see these steps taken months after the election, but adds it is predictable for Johnson to take part.

“This is now a passion of Ron Johnson’s. It’s something that he really seems to believe in and put an awful lot of time to,” Burden said. “I suspect he will continue to talk about it even after the election.”

While objections aren’t unheard of, Burden said it’s not common to see an event like this unfold.

“Suddenly, this year there is a massive number of them and it looks like maybe a quarter of Republicans in Congress will be objecting, maybe more than that in the house,” Burden said.

President-Elect Joe Biden’s team said he will be inaugurated on Jan. 20.