US Congress certified just 12 of the 538 electoral votes before riots broke out

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Washington, Jan 7 (PTI) The US Congress could certify just 12 Electoral College votes on Wednesday before pro-Trump rioters stormed the US Capitol, interrupting a joint session of Congress where lawmakers were set to certify President-elect Joe Biden's win.

The process of certifying the electoral votes works alphabetically, with lawmakers starting with Alabama and then working through the states in alphabetical order.

Congress had certified just two states — Alabama's nine Electoral College votes and Alaska's three — before the riots broke out. All 12 of those votes went to incumbent President Donald Trump.

There are 538 electoral votes in total, one for each congressperson and senator plus three for Washington, DC.

The election certification is usually a routine and ceremonial function that is the final step after the Electoral College officially elected Biden on December 14, but the certification was contested by a few Republican members of Congress.

In the November 3 presidential election, Biden, a Democrat won 306 Electoral College votes while Trump, a Republican, mustered only 232 votes.

Lawmakers were in the process of discussing Arizona's 11 Electoral College votes when the riots broke out. Several Republican lawmakers had objected to the votes, which were for Biden, prompting both the House and Senate to retire to their chambers to debate the objection.

After the riots broke out, Congress went into recess. It is not clear when they could reconvene to continue the certification process.

There are no clear answers yet on when the joint session will resume to certify President-elect Biden's win, CNN reported. PTI AKJ AKJ