Live coverage of President Obama press conference. This will be his last address to the nation for the year of 2016.
70 Electoral College members have signed the letter calling for an intelligence briefing into Russian hacking before they vote, and all eyes are on President Obama to see if he’ll address this during today’s White House press conference.
Obama Press Conference
In addition, Obama’s former colleague and Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig, who is giving legal advice to Republican electors, told Chuck Todd earlier this week that at least 20 Republican electors considering not voting for Trump. Plus thousands of Americans will be protesting nationwide on Dec. 19 while the Electoral College goes to cast their votes, urging electors to respect the will of the American people and vote for the winner of the national popular vote.
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The PCCC is working with Democracy Spring, Americans Take Action, and the organizers behind the Change.org Electoral College petition with over 4.8 million signatures on these unprecedented and historic protests taking place at all 50 state capitols and in DC.
Want to hop on the phone to discuss Dec. 19 and our Electoral College work? –Kait
By Tierney McAfee
It’s not over ’til the electors say it’s over. …
Harvard Law Professor Lawrence Lessig claims that more than 20 Republican electors are considering voting their conscience rather than voting for Trump.
Lessig’s anti-Trump group, Electors Trust, has been offering pro bono legal counsel to Republican electors who are considering rebelling against Trump. He offered no evidence to support his claim but told Politico, “We now believe there are more than half the number needed to change the result seriously considering making that vote.” …
More than 4.8 million citizens have signed a record-breaking Change.org petitioncalling on the Electoral College to make Hillary Clinton president. Daniel Brezenoff, founder of the Electoral College Petition, has been working with a coalition of like-minded academics, Democratic electors and at least one elected official to persuade Republican electors to cast their ballots for Clinton instead of Trump — even if it means voting against the candidate who won their state’s popular vote.
Brezenoff recently told PEOPLE of his efforts, “I know it’s a longshot but this has been a year of longshots and unpredictable outcomes.”
Brezenoff’s group has also joined with several others (Americans Take Action, Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and Democracy Spring) to form the December 19 Coalition, which is organizing protests to be held in all 50 state capitals on Monday during the Electoral College vote. Thousands of citizens are expected to take part in the demonstrations.
Obama Press Conference NEW YORK MAGAZINE: Challenging the Electoral College Vote Isn’t Futile, Though Trump Will Still Win
By Margaret Hartmann
Electors say they’ve been inundated with hundreds of calls, emails, and letters, and while voting in their respective statehouses on Monday, they’ll get to see some of the people begging to them to change their vote. Demonstrators gathered in more than two dozen cities on December 12, but the protests were relatively small and didn’t get much attention. However, several groups — including Americans Take Action, the Electoral College Petition, Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and Democracy Spring — are organizing protests in all 50 state capitals for December 19, and they expect thousands to turn out.
Certainly a large number of people rallying to overturn the Electoral College vote believe that 2016 could hold one more surprise, despite evidence to the contrary. But denying Trump the presidency isn’t the movement’s only goal. Politico reports that a survey of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee’s members found that roughly half were confident that Trump would be president, but about 91 percent were still in favor of lobbying electors. These are the main reasons people are pushing for an Electoral College upset, even if they don’t think it will succeed. …
Undermining Trump, not preventing him from taking office, is the essential goal of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee’s protest efforts, according to a letter sent to the group’s supporters this week.
“First, by generating media attention to the idea that Electors who support the popular vote winner, we can make it a source of mockery when Trump claims a ‘mandate’ for an authoritarian, anti-worker, right-wing agenda. And when establishment Republicans in Congress claim a ‘mandate’ to ram millions of dollars of corporate giveaways through Congress,” wrote Adam Green, the group’s co-founder. “Second, these events will force the media to report that Trump’s razor thin victories in battleground states were made possible in part by massive voter suppression.”
As Green mentioned, another goal is to draw attention to issues with the voting process in 2016, including voter suppression measures that followed the Supreme Court’s gutting of the Voting Rights Act and alleged Russian meddling in the election.
Obama Press Conference USA TODAY: Anti-Trump groups to protest Electoral College, urging it to change the vote
By David Jackson
A coalition of groups opposed to Donald Trump are planning demonstrations in all 50 state capitals on Monday, targeting the meetings of a historic and much-disputed organization: the Electoral College. …
Organizers of what they call the Dec. 19 protests — including Americans Take Action, the Electoral College Petition, Progressive Change Campaign Committee, and the Hamilton Electors, as well Democracy Spring — say they will try to change the results despite the long odds.
In addition to stressing Trump’s loss in the popular vote, protest organizers cite news reports about a CIA analysis saying that Russia interests behind President Vladimir Putin interfered in the election by hacking the emails of Democratic officials.
Obama Press Conference POLITICO: Progressive groups plan to protest Electoral College vote
By Gabriel Debenedetti and Kyle Cheney
When the 538 individuals who make up the Electoral College descend on the 50 state capitals to formalize the results of the presidential election on Dec. 19, it won’t be without fanfare: They’ll be greeted by a national wave of protests organized and supported by progressive groups.
The effort, backed by the left-leaning Progressive Change Campaign Committee, is the result of a survey of 23,000 of the group’s members who revealed they overwhelmingly favor lobbying electors to challenge Trump. About 91 percent of respondents say they favor the push, even though half said they were confident Trump would end up in the White House, according to a copy of the results provided to POLITICO. Rather, those members suggested a robust protest would “blunt his ‘mandate’ and momentum” as Trump takes office. …
Nationwide protests of the usually pro forma Electoral College vote would be an escalation of an already unprecedented pressure campaign targeting electors, who have rarely in American history bucked the will of voters. Many Republican electors have reported receiving tens of thousands of emails urging them to stay the course or to cast “faithless” votes against Trump. And two Colorado electors have filed suit in an effort to overturn state laws that purportedly force electors to support the statewide winner of the popular vote.
“We go into this with sober expectations. Barring an extraordinary event, the Electoral College will likely elect Donald Trump as president. However, we can achieve two concrete things with these protests even if Trump wins the vote,” writes PCCC co-founder Adam Green in a letter to the group’s members, which will circulate on Wednesday.
“First, by generating media attention to the idea that Electors who support the popular vote winner, we can make it a source of mockery when Trump claims a ‘mandate’ for an authoritarian, anti-worker, right-wing agenda. And when establishment Republicans in Congress claim a ‘mandate’ to ram millions of dollars of corporate giveaways through Congress,” Green writes. “Second, these events will force the media to report that Trump’s razor thin victories in battleground states were made possible in part by massive voter suppression.”
Obama Press Conference CNN: NIGHTCAP: Protesting the Electoral College
By Eric Bradner
Protesting the Electoral College: The Progressive Change Campaign Committee emailed its supporters about plans for major December 19 protests in state capitals. The email from PCCC co-founder Adam Green says “we’re going to make these protests a powerful show of force. News coverage of these protests will increase public awareness of the fact that Trump lost the popular vote by 2.5 million votes — helping to blunt his claim of a ‘mandate’ and harden the spine of Democrats to fight.”
Obama Press Conference POPSUGAR: 5 Reasons Every American Should Care About the Russian Hacking Story
By Annie Gabillet
Now that the noise of the election is over, Americans and lawmakers can better understand what is at stake with Russia. While Trump might dismiss protests, there are other avenues for outraged Americans. For example, the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC) is planning a march at state capitol buildings around the country on Dec. 19. The event page reads: “We the People will come together at every state capital across the United States to call on the Electors of the Electoral College to listen to the voice of the people and refuse to cast their ballots for Donald Trump.” Even if that request is not successful, the protests could weaken Trump. “With Russia’s tampering, it’s more apparent than ever that Trump has no mandate for an authoritarian, anti-unionist, right-wing agenda,” PCCC press secretary Kaitlin Sweeney said.