Pictured: Rep. Mike Garcia (left) in a 2020 campaign video. https://twitter.com/ElectMikeGarcia

by Kimberly Rivers

kimberly@vcreporter.com

Groups are calling for Rep. Mike Garcia (R-Santa Clarita) to be sanctioned due to his voting in favor of challenging electoral college vote tallies, even after a mob of rioters stormed the U.S. Capitol building on Wednesday, Jan. 6, requiring the certification of the presidential election to be postponed for several hours due to the evacuation of members of Congress from the various chambers. 

The online petition states that Garcia’s votes objecting to the certification of the election results should be investigated to determine whether his actions constitute a violation of his oath of office to uphold the U.S. Constitution. 

The House of Representatives re-convened late Wednesday night to resume the certification process after being evacuated. At 11:08 p.m., Garcia was part of a group of 121 House Republicans who supported the challenge in Arizona, which was defeated by 303 House members. He also objected to certification in Pennsylvania, joining 138 Republicans at 3:08 a.m. on Jan. 7. The Pennsylvania objection was defeated by 282 votes. 

Indivisible Antelope Valley, Indivisible CA-25 Simi Valley-Porter Ranch, Indivisible Santa Clarita and SCV for Change are sponsoring the online petition that calls on the U.S. House of Representatives and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to sanction Garcia because he “enabled and emboldened insurrectionists who stormed the Capitol.”

The Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol has resulted in at least five deaths, including one San Diego woman who was part of the mob and was shot by a Capitol Police officer, and Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who was attacked during the riot and later died. Sicknick’s death has prompted a federal murder investigation. 

The petition recognizes that some Republicans changed plans, and dropped their objections to the electoral college tallies following the incursion of rioters into the building, but “our congressman [Garcia] was undeterred by the behavior of these violent insurgents” and supported “the President’s dangerous rhetoric by voting in favor of the objection to the electoral college certification.” 

The petition supports a House resolution brought forward by Rep. Cori Bush (D-St. Louis) calling for the investigation of whether those House members, including Garcia, violated their oaths of office when they objected to the election results, and whether they should “face sanction, including removal from the House of Representatives,” according to the petition. 

The petition joins a chorus of calls across the country for Republicans who participated in the challenge to the final election certification to be held accountable for what these groups say “promot[ed] a false narrative that the 2020 election was fraudulent.” This rhetoric was continued by the President Donald Tramp at his rally in Washington D.C. the morning of Jan. 6, and joined with his calls to the large crowd to “walk to the capitol.”

Yesterday, Garcia released a statement that he believed there were “constitutional missteps” in those states to which he objected to certification. 

The groups sponsoring the petition are made up of voters in California’s District 25 that supported Garcia’s opponent, Christy Smith, in the 2020 election for the district’s House seat. 

Garcia did not respond to several requests for comment. 

The petition is online HERE. 

Records of votes cast in the U.S. House of Representatives is online HERE. 

Thirteen people have been charged in relation to their actions on Tuesday at the Capitol. HERE is the announcement from the acting U.S. Attorney General. Some of the federal crimes involved in the charges include: 

18 United States Code section 231 – Civil Disorder, which prohibits adversely affecting any federally protected function or obstructing any law enforcement officer from the performance of official duties, or any person who transports a firearm, explosive, or incendiary device to be used in furtherance of civil disorder. This federal crime is punishable by up to five years in prison.

18 United States Code section 2101 – The Federal Riot Act, which applies to anyone who travels in interstate commerce to incite, promote, or participate in a riot. This includes anyone who aided or abetted individuals who carried on a riot or committed any act of violence in furtherance of a riot. This federal crime is punishable by up to five years in prison.

18 United States Code section 1361 – Damage to Federal Property, which applies to anyone who willfully injures or causes damage to or against any property of the United States. This federal crime is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

18 United States Code section 2383 – Rebellion or Insurrection, which provides that whoever incites, assists or engages in any rebellion or insurrection against the United States faces up to 10 years in prison.