Reforming the Electoral Count Act

Congress’s most urgent task is to reform the Electoral Count Act, which sets forth procedures for tallying and certifying votes in presidential elections. The ECA is full of holes and vague and ambiguous clauses, yet it worked satisfactorily from its enactment in 1887 until 2020, when Trump and those aligned with him tried to take advantage of its flaws as a pretext for defying Biden’s victory in the Electoral College. In its amended form, the ECA must be air-tight. Republicans have shown that there is no limit on the perverseness of maneuvers they would make to pursue their authoritarian goals.