clearn.png
Saturday September 25th, 2021 9:11PM

The Latest: Lockdown at Capitol as protesters storm building

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Congress’ tally of the Electoral College vote won by Joe Biden (all times local):

2:20 p.m.

The Senate has recessed its debate over an objection to the results of the Electoral College after protesters forced police to lock down the building.

Reporters were told to stay in the Senate’s press gallery as the doors were locked.

Protesters tore down metal barricades at the bottom of the Capitol’s steps and were met by officers in riot gear. Some tried to push past the officers who held shields and officers could be seen firing pepper spray into the crowd to keep them back.

The skirmishes came just shortly after President Donald Trump addressed thousands of his supporters, riling up the crowd with his baseless claims of election fraud.

___

2:20 p.m.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz says American “democracy is in crisis” with polls showing that large numbers of voters “believe the election that just occurred was rigged."

Cruz, a Republican, objected to the certification of election results in Arizona, saying the Senate has a responsibility to acknowledge the profound threat posed by widespread disbelief in the legitimacy of the election.

He called for the creation of a commission to conduct a 10-day “emergency audit” to investigate any irregularities, citing a similar commission created after the 1876 presidential election.

Cruz urged lawmakers not to “take the easy path, but instead act together″ and create a “credible and fair tribunal. Consider the claims, consider the facts, consider the evidence and make a conclusive determination whether and to what extent this election complied with the Constitution.’’

___

1:55 p.m.

The U.S. Capitol Police are evacuating some congressional office buildings due to “police activity” as thousands gather outside the Capitol to protest the electoral vote.

Police told congressional staff members they should evacuate the Cannon House Office Building and the building that houses the Library of Congress. It wasn’t immediately clear what specifically sparked the evacuation.

A police spokeswoman did not immediately respond to calls and emails seeking comment.

Thousands of people have descended on the U.S. Capitol as Congress is expected to vote to affirm Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential win. Videos posted online showed protesters fighting with U.S. Capitol Police officers as police fired pepper spray to keep them back.

___

1:55 p.m.

The Senate’s top Republican has told his colleagues that Congress should not override the voters’ verdict in electing Democrat Joe Biden president, saying, “If we overrule them we will damage our republic forever.”

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell made his remarks as the Senate weighed a challenge by a handful of GOP lawmakers to the 11 electoral votes Arizona cast for Biden.

It was the first of several challenges to states’ electoral votes that some Republicans are mounting, encouraged by President Donald Trump’s groundless charges that the election was riddled with fraud. Congress seems certain to reject all those challenges on Wednesday and formally certify Biden’s victory.

McConnell says while all elections have irregularities, they weren’t “anywhere near the massive scale that would have tipped the entire election.” He says Congress should not declare itself “a national board of elections on steroids,” and says reversing the election results would push the country’s democratic institutions toward “a death spiral.”

___

1:15 p.m.

Republicans from the House and Senate have objected to the counting of Arizona’s electoral vote, forcing votes in both chambers on Joe Biden’s victory in the state.

The objection was made by Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar and was signed by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. Both are Republicans. The two chambers now have two hours to debate the challenge.

Biden won the state by more than 10,000 votes. In all, eight lawsuits challenging Biden’s Arizona win have failed, in part over a lack of evidence.

The state’s Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld the dismissal of an election challenge, because the plaintiff lacked the right to bring the suit in the first place. The woman wasn’t a registered voter when she sued.

Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, a Democrat, has said there were no irregularities with the vote in her state.

___

1:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump is taking aim at Republican members of Congress who have refused to join him in his effort to contest the results of the November election he lost to President-elect Joe Biden.

Trump on Wednesday told a large crowd of supporters gathered on the Ellipse that they needed to vote these Republicans out of office by putting up challengers in primary elections to push them out.

“If they don’t fight, we have to primary the hell out of the ones that don’t fight,” Trump said, calling the Republicans who aren’t siding with him “weak.”

Earlier, he named and praised Republicans who have pledged to contest the electoral votes of some states when they come up for approval on Capitol Hill.

His supporters, who braved chilly, windy conditions, chanted “Fight for Trump!”

___

1:10 p.m.

Congress has begun a joint session to count and confirm the Electoral College vote won by Joe Biden.

With supporters of President Donald Trump gathering around the Capitol, more than a dozen Republican senators and more than 100 Republican House members have said they will object to the count from as many as six battleground states. They are echoing Trump’s false claims of widespread fraud.

Their efforts are almost certain to fail as many Republicans have said they will oppose the objections. But the session is expected to last into the night on Wednesday as the House and Senate must consider each objection separately and vote on whether to sustain it.

Vice President Mike Pence will preside over the session. He has no power to overturn the results, despite pressure from Trump to do so.

Biden won the Electoral College 306-232. He is set to be inaugurated Jan. 20.

___

1 p.m.

Vice President Mike Pence is defying President Donald Trump, saying he does not have the unilateral ability to discard electoral votes that will make Joe Biden president on Jan. 20.

Pence, in a statement issued minutes before he was to begin presiding over a joint session of Congress to count electoral votes, said, “It is my considered judgement that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not.”

Trump has pressured his vice president to toss electors from battleground states that voted for Biden during the session.

___

12:30 p.m.

President Donald Trump is continuing his pressure-campaign against Vice President Mike Pence, telling thousands of supporters falsely that all Pence has to do to stay in office is send Electoral College votes back to the states to be recertified.

Pence has no such unilateral power under the Constitution and congressional rules that govern the count. It is up to the House and Senate to voice objections, and in any case the states’ electors were chosen in accordance with state law, not fraudulently.

The demonstrators on the Ellipse, south of the White House, cheered Trump on and planned to march to Capitol Hill where Congress will vote to affirm or contest the Electoral College results. The president said he’d be walking with the crowd.

“All Mike Pence has to do is send it back to the states,” Trump said, urging his loyal vice president to join lawmakers who are protesting President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.

“Mike Pence is going to have to come through for us,” Trump said, “and if he doesn’t it’s a sad day for our country.” Trump said it would take courage for Pence not to contest the results.

___

12:15 p.m.

President Donald Trump is vowing that “we will never concede” as he speaks to supporters shortly before Congress is to convene for a joint session to confirm the Electoral College vote won by President-elect Joe Biden.

Trump took the stage at the Save America rally, which drew thousands of supporters who swamped the nation’s capital as the president’s Republican allies in the House and Senate plan to object to his November election loss to Biden.

Trump urged Vice President Mike Pence, who will play a largely ceremonial role in the process, to block certification of Biden’s win. Pence does not have this power.

“Our country has had enough,” Trump said. “We won’t take it anymore.”

___

11 a.m.

Sen. Mitt Romney says President Donald Trump’s election challenge has “disgraced the office of the presidency."

Romney told reporters on Capitol Hill ahead of Wednesday’s joint session to confirm Joe Biden’s Electoral College win that he was certain of the outcome.

“I’m confident that we’ll proceed as the Constitution demands and tell our supporters the truth — whether or not they want to hear it,” Romney said.

Republican lawmakers are picking up Trump’s demands to challenge the results from several states. But they are not expected to have enough votes in Congress to change the results. Biden is set to be inaugurated on Jan. 20.

Romney said, “President Trump has disrespected the American voters, has dishonored the election system and has disgraced the office of the presidency.”

He called the “gambit” of the challenges in Congress “very disappointing.”

___

HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT CONGRESS' TALLY OF THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE VOTE

Read more:

— EXPLAINER: How Congress will count Electoral College votes

— Trump insists, falsely, that Pence can decertify results

— GOP’s Biden vote revolt is atypical challenge for McConnell

— Dividing party, Republicans poised to challenge Biden win

___

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News, AP Elections - Campaigns
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
The Latest: Lockdown at Capitol as protesters storm building
The Senate has recessed its debate over an objection to the results of the Electoral College after protesters forced police to lock down the building
2:25PM ( 5 minutes ago )
US Capitol locked down as Trump supporters clash with police
The U.S. Capitol locked down Wednesday with lawmakers inside as violent clashes broke out between supporters of President Donald Trump police
2:21PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Warnock makes history with Senate win as Dems near majority
Democrat Raphael Warnock has won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs, becoming the first Black senator in his state’s history and putting the Senate majority within the party's reach
2:11PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
2 detectives involved in Breonna Taylor's death are fired
Two more officers involved in the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor have been fired — a detective believed to have fired the fatal shot and another who sought the search warrant that led to the deadly raid
1:53PM ( 36 minutes ago )
Arizona border deaths hit 10-year high after record heat
A project that maps where the bodies of border-crossers were recovered from Arizona’s inhospitable deserts, valleys and mountains says it documented 227 deaths in 2020
1:53PM ( 37 minutes ago )
'Only in America': Warnock's rise from poverty to US senator
The man elected to be Georgia's first Black senator calls his story one that could only happen in America
1:44PM ( 46 minutes ago )
AP National News
Pandemic-era Mardi Gras: No big crowds, but plenty of cake
A subdued Carnival season is starting in New Orleans
12:38PM ( 1 hour ago )
Congress set to confirm Biden's electoral win over Trump
President Donald Trump’s extraordinary effort to overturn the presidential election is going before Congress
12:28PM ( 2 hours ago )
2 detectives involved in Breonna Taylor raid are fired
Louisville has hired Atlanta’s former chief to lead its police department after months of unrest over the fatal shooting of Breonna Taylor, and fired two more officers involved in the deadly raid
12:11PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online National News
Justice Department says it's been affected by Russian hack
The Justice Department says about 3 percent of its email accounts could be compromised as part of a massive breach of federal government agencies that U.S. officials have linked to Russia
1:50PM ( 40 minutes ago )
The Latest: Trump keeps up pressure on Pence to subvert vote
President Donald Trump is continuing his pressure-campaign against Vice President Mike Pence, telling thousands of supporters falsely that all Pence has to do to stay in office is send Electoral College votes back to the states to be recertified
12:34PM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Trump vows at rally 'we will never concede'
President Donald Trump is vowing that “we will never concede” as he speaks to supporters shortly before Congress is to convene for a joint session to confirm the Electoral College vote won by President-elect Joe Biden
12:21PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Trump pressures powerless Pence on electoral count
President Donald Trump is trying to pressure Vice President Mike Pence to use powers he doesn't have to overturn the will of voters in a desperate and futile bid to undo President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the November election
9:56AM ( 4 hours ago )
Stocks are off to a mixed start on Wall Street as tech slips
Stocks are off to a mixed start on Wall Street and Treasury yields are rising as investors keep a close eye on Senate races in Georgia, which could flip control of the chamber to Democrats
9:45AM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: Trump pressures Pence to overturn Biden's win
President Donald Trump is turning up the pressure on his vice president in a futile effort to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 presidential election in Congress
9:00AM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Georgia tallying final votes in key Senate runoff elections
Candidates are locked in tight races as Georgia officials tallied the final votes in two critical Senate elections that will determine control of the U.S. Senate and, in turn, the fate of President-elect Joe Biden’s legislative agenda
1:52AM ( 12 hours ago )
The Latest: Warnock thanks supporters, voices optimism
Democratic Senate candidate Raphael Warnock has given what amounts to a victory speech, saying he was honored by the faith that voters had shown in him and promising to work for all Georgians
1:13AM ( 13 hours ago )
GOP's Biden vote revolt is atypical challenge for McConnell
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell thinks it’s dangerous for his party to challenge President-elect Joe Biden’s election triumph
1:02AM ( 13 hours ago )
AP Elections
Georgia tallies votes as US Senate control hangs in balance
Georgia officials are counting the final votes of the nation’s turbulent 2020 election season as polls closed in two critical races that will determine control of the U.S. Senate and, in turn, the fate of President-elect Joe Biden’s legislative agenda
11:01PM ( 15 hours ago )
GEORGIA TAKEAWAYS: Trump's long shadow not fading yet
Ballots are still being counted in the Georgia runoffs that will determine control of the U.S. Senate and the scope of President-elect Joe Biden’s agenda
10:51PM ( 15 hours ago )
The Latest: FBI probed bomb threat for Georgia polling site
The elections director for Georgia’s most populous county says a bomb threat targeting an Election Day polling place in Georgia’s most populous county was investigated last week by the FBI
9:09PM ( 17 hours ago )
General Election News
Trump insists, falsely, that Pence can decertify results
President Donald Trump is tightening the screws on his most loyal soldier, pressuring Vice President Mike Pence to use powers he doesn't have to overturn the will of voters
11:11PM ( 15 hours ago )
Hundreds of Trump supporters flock to DC ahead of vote
Hundreds of supporters of President Donald Trump have descended on the nation’s capital to cheer his baseless claims of election fraud a day before a congressional vote to affirm Joe Biden’s election victory
10:20PM ( 16 hours ago )
The Latest: Perdue, Loeffler backers gather at Atlanta hotel
Hundreds of supporters of Republicans David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler have gathered at a high-rise hotel in Atlanta’s Buckhead district
8:27PM ( 18 hours ago )
General Presidential Election News
Biden, Trump warn of high stakes of Georgia Senate runoffs
President-elect Joe Biden on Monday told Georgia Democrats they had the power to “chart the course” for a generation as President Donald Trump urged Republican voters to “swamp” the polls ahead of runoff elections that will determine control of the U.S. Senate
11:07PM ( 1 day ago )
Pence, Biden warn of high stakes of Georgia Senate runoffs
President-elect Joe Biden is telling Georgia voters that he needs a Democratic Senate majority to combat the coronavirus and get other things done
7:51PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
US Capitol locked down as Trump supporters clash with police
The U.S. Capitol locked down Wednesday with lawmakers inside as violent clashes broke out between supporters of President Donald Trump police
2:21PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Warnock makes history with Senate win as Dems near majority
Democrat Raphael Warnock has won one of Georgia’s two Senate runoffs, becoming the first Black senator in his state’s history and putting the Senate majority within the party's reach
2:11PM ( 19 minutes ago )
AP FACT CHECK: Trump's false claims on a day of reckoning
At a rally and on Twitter, President Donald Trump is pressing his case for overturning the election results as Congress begins counting and confirming the Electoral College vote won by Joe Biden
2:10PM ( 20 minutes ago )
GEORGIA TAKEAWAYS: Black turnout fuels Warnock victory
The Rev. Raphael Warnock, a Democrat, has defeated Sen. Kelly Loeffler in a special election for an unexpired term for a U.S. Senate seat in Georgia
2:03PM ( 27 minutes ago )
Albert Roux, major influence on UK dining habits, dies at 85
Albert Roux, the French-born chef and restaurateur who along with his late brother Michel had a profound influence on British dining habits, has died at 85
2:02PM ( 28 minutes ago )