Arizona Republican says state lawmakers, not voters, should pick president

<span>Photograph: Ross D Franklin/AP</span>
Photograph: Ross D Franklin/AP
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

A proposal from an Arizona lawmaker calls for the state legislature to decide on presidential electors instead of adhering to a popular vote.

The state senator Anthony Kern, a Republican, served as a fake elector in 2020, falsely asserting that Donald Trump won the state. Those involved in the fake electors schemes in several states have been charged. In Arizona, the fake electors are under investigation by the Democratic attorney general, her office has confirmed. Kern also attended the 6 January 2021 rally at the US Capitol.

The senate concurrent resolution says that the “sole authority to appoint presidential electors” should fall to the legislature. It calls on the legislature to stay in session during presidential election years for this purpose. As a concurrent resolution, the proposal does not require the governor’s signature and does not have the force of law; it functions more to state the legislative body’s position on an issue.

Such a change would be a dramatic departure from today’s democratic process, where voters elect a candidate for president and states allocate electors according to whoever won the popular vote in their state as part of the electoral college process.

As a key swing state, Arizona’s elections will again take center stage in 2024. The state’s Republicans have remained gripped by election fervor, with prominent lawmakers and candidates insisting the 2020 election was stolen and seeking changes to laws that could limit voters’ power.