Turley Weighs in on Whether We'll Ever Get to the Bottom of Election Irregularities

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Posted: Jan 06, 2021 9:45 AM
Turley Weighs in on Whether We'll Ever Get to the Bottom of Election Irregularities

Source: AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Democrat and George Washington University Professor Jonathan Turley is calling for an election commission in order to restore the faith in the voting process after a number of irregularities and last minute changes during the 2020 cycle. 

He's also arguing the merits of court cases brought by the Trump campaign and allied groups weren't heard on the merits, but thrown out on technicalities. From his piece in USA Today

I hate federal commissions. I have always hated federal commissions. Federal commissions are Washington’s way of managing scandals. They work like placebos for political fevers, convincing voters that answers and change are on the way. That is why it is so difficult for me to utter these words: We need a federal election commission. Not the one proposed by some Senate Republicans. And not like past placebo commissions. An honest-to-God, no-holds-barred federal commission to look into the 2020 presidential election.

With the challenge to the certification of election votes, some Republican members of Congress are calling to delay the proceedings for 10 days and impanel a commission to “audit” the results. There is precedent for such a commission. Just not good precedent. Indeed, citing the Electoral Commission of 1877 as a model of good constitutional process is like citing the Titanic as a model of good maritime navigation. The commission was an utter disaster.

Roughly 40% of that electorate have lingering doubts about whether their votes actually matter. Most of the cases challenging the election were not decided on the merits. Indeed, it seems they haven't even been allowed for discovery. Instead, they were largely dismissed on jurisdictional or standing groups or under the “laches” doctrine that they were brought too late. Those allegations need to be conclusively proven or disproven in the interests of the country.

Meanwhile, Republican Senator Tim Scott introduced legislation Tuesday evening that would do much of what Turley has called for.

“My bill will establish an Election Integrity Commission that would study the merits and administration of the November 2020 election and make recommendations to State legislatures to improve the security, integrity, and administration of federal elections. It is absolutely critical that every American has faith in our electoral system and that their vote is counted. As President Reagan said, ‘Freedom is never more than a generation away from extinction,’ and now more than ever before is it our duty to regain the trust of the American voter,” Scott released in a statement. 

You can read about the details of Scott's bill here