We do not have a president-elect

Do we have a president-elect in 2020?

Some say we do. Some say we don’t. So, what prevails? How about we follow the U.S. Constitution? Ho, what a novel idea.

The Constitution provides us a five-step election process, over a nine-and-one-half-week period, to choose our president.

We do not have a president-elect. Why? The second step is now in process.

Article 2, Section 1, and Amendments 12 and 20 of our U.S. Constitution which guides our presidential elections, tells us we have much more to do.

So, what are the five steps the Constitution proscribes to assure that the presidential election represents the will of all American citizens?

Step one is complete. The popular election for president (electors) took place on Tuesday, Nov. 3, per the individual election laws of the separate states. Article II, Section 1, Paragraph 2 of the Constitution states, “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be intitled in the Congress.”

The second step is currently taking place, from Nov. 4 to Dec. 14. The 12th Amendment of the Constitution states, “They (the State Electors) shall…name in their ballots the persons…for President…and the number of votes for each…which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit to…the President of the Senate.” The certification process, affirming lawful and disqualifying unlawful votes, conducting recounts if necessary, is currently underway. Legal challenges may be filed by any American citizen with state legislatures, election officers, courts and, ultimately, the U.S. Supreme Court, up to Dec. 8, preceding the meeting of the Electoral College set for Monday, Dec. 14.

The third step. On Dec. 23, the president of the Senate receives the electoral vote certificates, and then on Jan. 6, in joint session of the House and Senate, opens and counts the electoral votes. “There shall be provided an opportunity to challenge any disputed state elector by one Senator and one Congressman together.” The challenge will then be considered and voted on in the Senate and House separately. (US code Presidential elections, Chapter 1, Title 3, Section 5) All challenges being resolved, the person having the majority of electoral votes, being 270 or more, shall be president.

Step four: If the number of certified electors for the top president choice is short of 270 due to disqualification of electors by a state Legislative action or court disqualification, or tie, then, the Electoral College will be dismissed and the presidential election process is passed to the U.S. Congress. The 12th Amendment states, “and if no such person have such majority then…the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by States, the Representative of each State having one vote.”

Woa, Congress may choose the president? Twice in our history it has.

The Fifth step: The swearing in inauguration: The 20th Amendment to the Constitution states, “The President’s term of office shall end at noon on the 20th day of January…and the term of the successor shall begin.”

The final decision may not be known until Jan. 6, three days after the new Congress is sworn in, and possibly as late as January 20, 2021, inauguration day.

We do not have a president-elect.


Cam Cavasso is a former state Representative and former candidate for U.S. Congress.

  1. Citizen Cane November 22, 2020 4:23 am Reply

    Mr Cavasso conveniently leaves out the part where state legislatures (following the constitution’s Article II directive) have (“in such manner as [they] may direct”) passed laws that their appointed electors MUST vote for the popularly chosen winner in their state. To do otherwise they’d have to change the laws. Not gonna happen. For eg. in Michigan the Dem gov would veto such tomfoolery, ditto Tony Evers (D) in Wisconsin. PA’s a little different, but has indicated they won’t be deviating from the popular vote either.
    This business of twisting yourselves into legal pretzels to keep Trump in office is unseemly at best. Where were you all in 2016? Happy to call him “President Elect Trump” …as soon as the networks called it!
    The Constitution is tested in the courts, and so far the courts, many with republican judges, aren’t having any of the subversive nonsense you’re peddling. Sure it’s legal, but that doesn’t make it right.

  2. Mark November 22, 2020 5:44 am Reply

    What’s happening currently in the us is a stark contrast to the George Washington era where everyone was working for the better of the country. Its such a shame because even if one side wins the other side will still do everything to not let any bills pass. I read this article the other day and it was a pretty funny one about George Washington never apparently dying but it still highlights how much he was willing to sacrifice for his country. https://neazy.net/george-washington-was-invicible/

  3. Kawika November 22, 2020 7:08 am Reply

    We don’t have a president elect yet because the former President will not conceded until he has tried to take away votes or attempts to subvert the electorial college system. His actions are a danger to our country as President Biden can not prepare to take over the leadership of the country putting us all in danger of not having a smooth transitions. Those people who believe our voting process is corrupt and compromised are the same ones waiting for Mexico to write a check for a wall. They should enter Trump university and get a quality education.

  4. Daniel Wright November 22, 2020 7:11 am Reply

    Thanks Cam for explaining what the media will not! We do not have a president-elect. Got that everyone? The media doesn’t decide elections. LEGAL votes do.

    1. ok November 22, 2020 8:02 pm Reply

      It really doesn’t matter what you call Biden until Jan 20, but if you think Trump is staying in office you are in more denial than a flat-earther. Biden has millions more legal votes and the electoral college as well. Exactly what do you think is going to happen? All the random claims the right is making can be easily debunked. Most don’t even make sense. Your theory is that the democrats had such widespread cheating, cheating that has not been found even with all the recounts and scrutiny, and yet they forgot to cheat on the senate and house votes? The democrats cheated with millions of votes, but it slipped their mind to win the senate and house. Real likely.
      Lets make a bet. All the people that think Trump is going to magically flip a bunch of states, and somehow drop millions of democratic votes can put up ten bucks. Ill even give you 2-1 odds.

  5. Thomas Emmett Owen November 22, 2020 7:26 am Reply

    So, based on that I assume you would agree that the country and Trump were wrong in 2016 by calling him the president elect. At that time he had won by the same amount of electoral votes as President-elect Joe Biden has this year.

  6. James I. Kuroiwa, Jr. November 22, 2020 7:28 am Reply

    Mahalo Cam Cavasso, the Mainstream Media is attempting to take control of our Country by making the call as to who is our President elect. The Rule of Law, as you have laid out show the Mainstream Media is truly “Unlawful” by calling the Presidential Election. We must follow the Rule of Law and let the Presidential election process play itself out, where each of us can be confident in our casted vote.

  7. jake November 22, 2020 7:37 am Reply

    No surprise there, Cam. We haven’t had a President either for the past 4 years.

    1. Curmudgeon November 22, 2020 6:43 pm Reply

      Using your logic, we haven’t had a president for the last twelve years and probably won’t for the next four either!

  8. Barney November 22, 2020 7:53 am Reply

    CNN doesn’t get to choose?

  9. Lawaibob November 22, 2020 9:16 am Reply

    “In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state. Our people, laws, and institutions demand more.”

  10. drsurf November 22, 2020 10:22 am Reply

    aloha Sam – just wondering if any Republican ever referred to Trump as President Elect before January 20th at noon? And if january 20th is THE day why does Trump say he won the election before every state has been certified?

  11. Joshua Beadle November 22, 2020 10:25 am Reply

    MAGA / Trump doesn’t want American Democracy- they want Control. By what ever means. Trump learned early on that he can easily exploit Christians into some form of a Jihad, with him as their God like leader. I don’t blame Trump for being Trump. I blame his enablers, and fools who are following False Idols. Read your own book, perhaps

  12. Andy November 22, 2020 10:52 am Reply

    Hawaii voted for Biden, so he is our president elect. Also, The Garden Island is Kauai, not Oahu. We don’t vote in Oahu elections, so why are you “teaching” us about the presidential election process? President-Elect is a broad term, no doubt. But we do have a president elect: Joe Biden. He won the popular vote and has more electoral votes then the Republican nominee. So with regard to the American majority, Biden is the president elect.

  13. Anon Ymouse November 22, 2020 11:00 am Reply

    Nothing requires the formal processes be finalized for the GSA transitional funds to be released or for the daily security briefings to occur.

    And with the same projected electoral count four years ago, these already had occurred for the current (now outgoing) administration.

    Those operating in the best interests of the country — and of democracy — would want a smooth, rather than unnecessarily hindered, transition of power. And they should want anyone challenging the legitimacy of the democratic process to be able to support their allegations with sufficient facts and evidence, or to otherwise facilitate a smooth transition themselves.

  14. James Z November 22, 2020 11:31 am Reply

    I wonder if Mr. Cavasso would go to such lengths if the president-elect were a Republican? The reason he appeals to legal formality proves he actually thinks there is a legal case to be made for the election process to be illegitimate. He obviously ‘buys’ the conspiracy B.S. and thus renders his argument nonsense at best and posturing at worst.

  15. Rev Dr Malama November 22, 2020 11:52 am Reply

    Former Representative means the people voted…. or not for you.
    It ain’t rocket science!!!
    Biden is not my perfect candidate and nobody is perfect so I voted for nobody….
    All joking aside, the due diligence of crunched numbers indicated that in Hawai’i all the people who I feel needed to get into office were apparently a walk in, landslide or nobrainer!!!
    I prayed instead of voting and my time is being rewarded with honesty and hope for the future generations….
    I highly recommend you put God at the helm and follow the course of mitigating democracy and equality in our community and government.

  16. Pete Antonson November 22, 2020 1:25 pm Reply

    We do have a President Elect. Language has a feature called the vernacular. When terms are commonly used for a specific meaning, that meaning becomes correct, even if it can be technically incorrect. It may bother some Republic Party members like Cam Cavasso right now; but, the media is correctly using the term President Elect.

  17. curious dog November 22, 2020 2:23 pm Reply

    Just curious how Republican Cam Cavasso would react if this were 2016 & Hillary Clinton & the Dems were doing what Donald Trump & the GOP is attempting right now? At least Hillary won the popular vote by 3 million people.

    If electors vote for Trump in a state won by Biden, elections can indeed be stolen & one person-one vote is out the window. America…..one sneeze away from Anarchy.


  18. Kimo Kane November 22, 2020 9:23 pm Reply

    Guest writer would suggest this guy was invited to write this… who owns TGI? Going down with the sinking ship Cam Cavasso.

  19. Mychal November 23, 2020 7:01 am Reply

    Whether or not Joe Biden technically meets the definition of President Elect or not is irrelevant. No one is arguing not to count the legal votes. Two relevant problems. 1) The President of the United States is deceiving his loyal followers by lying about non-existent fraud and undermining the faith in the electoral process. 2) By refusing to engage in any transition process he is putting Americans at risk

  20. behappy November 23, 2020 11:05 am Reply

    Wonder when the impeachments will begin? Will he receive 4 years of hell like Trump from voters who never accepted him as their president. What goes around comes around eventually. It may take time but the backlash of the left against Trump will find a way to Biden in another form. The laws of cause and effect: All causes will have an effect on everything and anything within the universe which will then lead to further causes of other things and so the replication or chain reaction of events continues infinitely.

    1. Pete Antonson November 24, 2020 9:25 pm Reply

      I love to watch you 18th Century cause and effect guys sputtering to explain the joyous randomness that is quantum mechanics!

  21. Loladog November 23, 2020 5:48 pm Reply

    Ignorance is bliss be happy. You happy?

  22. I saw a Vampire once November 23, 2020 10:08 pm Reply

    Are they still counting the votes or recounting? You mean Biden hasn’t yet taken over the white house because there is a procedure that still must be followed. Recounting the votes again. Sure they dishonest workers at the polls. But does it make any difference because the numbers is still in favor of Biden. Largely because of the popular votes. He won Pennsylvania. Which was the deciding factor for 22 electoral votes, which put him over 270 and the win. They should settle it here. And not care about the dishonest politics at the polls by the workers who put in dead bodies votes in the register. Let’s move on.

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