Two Minnesota Republicans in Congress voted against certifying election results Wednesday, despite a violent insurrection at the Capitol earlier that day.
Republican Representatives Michelle Fischbach (CD-7) and Jim Hagedorn (CD-1) voted against certifying electoral college results in the key states of Arizona and Pennsylvania during what is typically a routine process.
Objections to results in the two states came from claims by some lawmakers that those states saw irregularities and evidence of widespread fraud in their elections, claims that have been repeatedly debunked and rejected in the courts.
The House of Representatives voted to certify Arizona’s results 303-121 and Pennsylvania’s results 282-138.
“Today, I plan to vote for the objections to the certification of electoral votes in certain contested states. This election was shrouded in allegations of irregularities and fraud too voluminous to ignore. In order to fulfill my duty to the constitution and my constituents, I believe there must be a proper investigation to consider these claims," Fischbach said in a statement Wednesday.
Minnesota Representatives Angie Craig, D-CD1., Tom Emmer, R-CD6., Betty McCollum D-CD4., Ilhan Omar, D-CD5., Dean Phillips, D-CD3, and Pete Stauber, R-CD-8., all voted to certify the results.
There were also several GOP senators who had planned to vote against certifying the results, but changed their minds after seeing the mob assault on the Capitol. This followed incitement by President Trump, who urged supporters to walk on the Capitol and make their feelings known, and even after calling for peace continues to refuse to acknowledge his election loss.
Among those walking back their objections were Georgia Sen. Kelly Loeffler and Oklahoma's James Lankford. Seven still voted against certifying the results, among them Texas' Ted Cruz, and Missouri's Josh Hawley.
Emmer was among the Republicans to criticize the challenges as undermining trust in the country’s election. Challenges should be taken up in the courts, not Congress, he argued.
He said "the fact of the matter remains: the courts are responsible for answering these questions and the state legislatures must act to send competing slates of electors if Congress is going to do anything beyond its constitutionally prescribed duty to certify electors.”
But the Minnesota DFL chairman Ken Martin says Stauber and Emmer shouldn't be let off the hook just because they voted to certify the results, saying their support of Trump and his rhetoric contributed to Wednesday's scenes.
"For months, Congressmen Stauber, Emmer, Hagedorn, and Fischbach have been fueling the fires of conspiracy and paranoia that now threaten to engulf our nation’s Capitol,” Martin said.
"Each of Minnesota Republican members of Congress has worked to sow distrust in the American electoral process and each of Minnesota’s Republican members of Congress bears responsibility for the violence their actions have helped unleash.”
Following the violent display by the extremist mob, lawmakers including Craig, McCollum and Omar called on President Donald Trump, who they say incited the violence, to be removed. Omar has said she will draw up articles of impeachment, while Craig and McCollum have called on Vice President Mike Pence and Trump's cabinet to invoke the 25th Amendment.