Kentucky Politics

Kentucky’s 5th district Congressman Hal Rogers was the only member of the state’s federal delegation to vote against certifying the presidential election results on Wednesday, citing unfounded claims of election fraud.

Rogers was ultimately on the losing side of the vote, which took place hours after right-wing extremists stormed the U.S. Capitol following a rally for President Donald Trump on the National Mall.

In a statement, he said that his stance was the result of hundreds of calls from constituents questioning the election results.

“Every American should have confidence in knowing that every fair vote is accurately counted,” Rogers said.

“Therefore, on behalf of the people of Kentucky’s Fifth Congressional District, I am objecting to electoral votes tied to allegations of election fraud and voting irregularities in the 2020 presidential election.” 

Baseless claims of voter fraud promoted by outgoing President Trump have thrived among his supporters.

The fervor led to six senators and 121 representatives, all Republicans, refusing to certify election results from Arizona and Pennsylvania on Wednesday.

Rogers was the only member of Kentucky’s congressional delegation to join the unprecedented attempt to change the election outcome.

Even Republican Sen. Rand Paul, who last month claimed that the election was “stolen,” ultimately said on Wednesday that voting to overturn the election “would doom the Electoral College forever.”

“I can’t vote to overturn the verdict of states,” Paul said.

Rogers did not respond to a request to be interviewed.

In a statement, Republican Party of Kentucky Chair Mac Brown criticized attempts to thwart the Electoral College, though he didn’t mention Rogers by name.

“The Electoral College is a critical piece of the vision of representative government set forth by the Founders in our Constitution. We stand against any attempts to overturn these principles,” Brown said.

Marisa McNee, spokesperson for the Kentucky Democratic Party, called Rogers’ vote “reprehensible.”

“Yesterday, after domestic terrorists breached the U.S. Capitol in one of the worst moments in our country’s history, Congressman Hal Rogers did the unthinkable: he enabled and emboldened the mob by voting to overturn the will of the American voters,” McNee said.

“If Hal Rogers wants to side with domestic terrorists, he should resign from Congress immediately and let someone else represent his district.”

Rogers is 83 years old and has been in Congress since 1981.

Ryland Barton is the Capitol bureau chief for Kentucky Public Radio.