I’ve read many letters in the Prince William Times recently that ask why I signed onto the amicus brief and many who have misconstrued what the amicus brief says in the first place, so I’d like to clear that up.
The brief states, "The offices of president and vice president were created by the U.S. Constitution, and when a state legislature exercises its power to determine the manner in which electors are chosen, that power is governed solely by the federal Constitution. No state constitution, state law, state governor, state election official, or court can alter or constrain that grant of power. More than a century ago, this court applied the plain meaning of the Electors Clause and recognized the exclusive authority of the state legislatures to act for the people with respect to selection of electors. The court explained: ‘The appointment of these electors is thus placed absolutely and wholly with the legislatures of the several states. This power is conferred upon the legislatures of the states by the Constitution of the United States, and cannot be taken from them or modified by their State constitutions.’”
Simply put: Article II, Sec. 1, clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution states that presidential electors must be appointed according to rules established by each state’s legislature.
Yet in the months before the 2020 election, the constitutional authority of state legislatures was simply usurped by various governors, state courts, state election officials and others when state election laws were deliberately changed in certain states without the approval of the states’ legislatures. This raised a Constitutional question, which is why I signed onto the amicus brief in Texas v. Pennsylvania, et al.
The amici respectfully asserted it is the solemn duty of the Supreme Court to provide an objective review to determine for the people if indeed the Constitution had been followed and the rule of law maintained. The amicus brief was intended to focus on a broader constitutional question by asking the Supreme Court to uphold the clear constitutional authority of the state legislatures to establish the manner by which electors are appointed.
In the end, the state of Texas raised an important Constitutional question. It was asked, the Supreme Court decided not to answer that question, and I respect the court’s decision.
That is what makes this nation great: following due process, letting our system work, and ensuring that the voices of all Americans are heard. To be clear: I don’t support anything except the constitutionally grounded methods to question the system. I don’t support anything other than an orderly transition of power. That said, we cannot be afraid of asking the tough questions.
Our Constitutional republic has endured for nearly two and a half centuries based on the principle that a government’s validity stems from the consent of the governed. That consent is grounded in people’s confidence in the legitimacy of our institutions of government. Among our most fundamental institutions is the system of free and fair elections that we rely upon, and any erosion in that foundation jeopardizes the stability of our republic. It is critical for our republic to restore the confidence of all Americans in our electoral processes and that we ensure all elections are secure.
As I have spoken with many constituents, I hear clearly their passion and concern for our country. As I move forward in serving you in Congress, I will seek the opportunity to come together and pass meaningful policies that matter most to the 1st District of Virginia. I will continue to fight to invest in a strong national defense, ensure we increased access to broadband coverage in our rural areas, and improve our transportation infrastructure and education systems.
We are truly blessed to live in the greatest country on Earth, one that relies on our institutions, on our fellow citizens, and on the rule of law to see us through.
While we have faced one of the most unprecedented chapters of our nation’s history, we have endured. And we will continue to endure, together.
The writer, a Republican, is a member of Congress representing Virginia’s 1st District, which includes parts of Prince William County.