House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Outlines Scenario Where House Democrats Would Decide 2020 Election

By  //  September 28, 2020

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presidential candidate "must receive a majority of the state delegations to win"

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(CBS NEWS) – With the presidential election just 36 days away, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is outlining a scenario in which the House of Representatives is forced to decide the outcome of the 2020 race for the White House, telling her Democratic caucus that the possibility underscores the need for the party to expand its majority in the House and win control of more state House delegations.

In a letter to House Democrats on Sunday, Pelosi detailed a situation that has not arisen for more than a century, in which neither Joe Biden nor President Trump wins the 270 electoral votes required to win a majority of the 538-vote Electoral College.

If that happens, a newly elected House would decide the fate of the presidency in January, with each state casting a single vote, as required by the 12th Amendment.

“Instead of giving every member of Congress a vote, the 12th Amendment gives each state one vote, which is determined by a vote of the state’s delegation,” Pelosi, of California, said to her fellow House Democrats. “In other words, how many state delegations the Democrats win in this upcoming election could determine who our next president is.”

The Constitution, Pelosi continues, states that a presidential candidate “must receive a majority of the state delegations to win” in the event that the election goes to the House.