LANSING, MI (WLNS) – In most election years, the Electoral College vote can be viewed more or less as a formality.
Every four years, more than 500 electors across the nation cast their votes for the candidate who won the most votes in their state.
But this election year, as we’ve learned time and time again, certainty is a rarity.
On Monday, 16 electors met at the state’s Capitol to fulfill their lawful duty and protesters followed, hoping to get them to vote against Michigan’s election results.
“We’re desperate. This is a despairing time in our history,” East Lansing Resident, Shelley Cichy said.
“The process wasn’t fair, especially in Michigan,” Tom Bartley, East Lansing Resident said. “And they need to vote for the Constitution of the United States.”
But those signs and chants inside the capitol, didn’t work. Even if it did, under Michigan law, our state’s electors cannot vote against the winner of the popular vote in the general election, which is Donald Trump.
“I’m glad people are passionate involved, that’s what freedom sounds like to quote Mike Pence,” Michael Banerian, Michigan elector said. “But I think that a lot of it comes from people misunderstanding the process, what our roles are as electors, and what the Michigan state law is frankly, so I would hope that they go and reevaluate this process and why we do what we do.”
“It’s our democracy at work and its part of our electoral process so I’m proud to be standing here today to participate in this,” Governor Rick Snyder said. “There’s freedom of speech, people can express their feelings but if you look, I think every respects the process that took place in these chambers to go through the official process for selecting the new president and vice president.”
But that wasn’t the case across the nation in states like Maine and Washington State, where electors did not have an obligation under the law to vote for the winner of the state’s popular vote, electors went against it.
And from recount efforts, to protests, the road to the White House has been a bumpy one, but the historic votes on Monday, helped pave the way for President Elect, Donald Trump’s victory.