May 18, 2022

Report From the Congressional Research Service: “Counting Electoral Votes: An Overview of Procedures at the Joint Session, Including Objections by Members of Congress”

From the Congressional Research Service:

The Constitution and federal law establish a detailed timetable following the presidential election during which time the members of the electoral college convene in the 50 state capitals and in the District of Columbia, cast their votes for President and Vice President, and submit their votes through state officials to both houses of Congress.

The electoral votes are scheduled to be opened before a joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021. Federal law specifies the procedures for this session and for challenges to the validity of an electoral vote. This report describes the steps in the process and precedents set in prior presidential elections governing the actions of the House and Senate in certifying the electoral vote and in responding to challenges of  the validity of electoral votes.

This report has been revised and will be updated on a periodic basis to provide the dates for the relevant joint session of Congress and to reflect any new, relevant precedents or practices.

Direct to Full Text Report
13 pages; PDF.

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.