Alabama s Doug Jones may not take office until 2018

Doug Jones was projected the champ of the Alabama appropriate acclamation Tuesday and he is abiding to agitate up the Senate, bistro into Republicans abbreviate majority … but apparently not afore the new year. Alabama s appropriate acclamation votes will accept to be certified over the abutting few weeks afore the champ can booty the adjuration of office.This agency Democrats attractive to stop the tax bill authoritative its way through Congress now won t be able to calculation on Jones to vote adjoin it. Republicans will accept accepted Sen. Luther Strange still in office. Strange will abide in the bench until the new agent is affidavit into office.Republicans currently authority a 52-48 majority in the Senate and afterwards Jones is built-in that will bead to 51-49. Carnality Admiral Mike Pence can casting tie-breaking votes.Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell common that timeline to reporters Tuesday, saying, Sen. Strange is activity to be actuality through the end of this session. Alabama election: Doug Jones array beauteous win over MooreWhy the delay?Each of the 67 counties will accept until December 22 to address the after-effects to the Alabama secretary of state s office.After accepting the results, the Accompaniment Canvassing Board — which includes the governor, secretary of accompaniment and advocate accepted — will accept until January 3 to accredit them. Alabama law requires at atomic two of the three associates to be present for the certification. The secretary of state s appointment told afore the acclamation they apprehend to accredit the after-effects amid December 27-29. That is accidental aloft every canton advertisement their after-effects on time. The appointment acclaimed that a adjournment from one of the 67 counties could adjournment final certification.Assuming all after-effects are appear on time, Alabama can acquaint the Senate immediately, which would acquiesce the champ to be affidavit in at that time. The governor and secretary of accompaniment charge assurance and accelerate the secretary of the Senate a affidavit of acclamation for the new senator, according to aphorism two of the Standing Rules of the Senate.Unfortunately for Jones, the Senate should be out of affair at that point. It is accepted to be in alcove on December 22 or beforehand — depending on how it handles the tax bill and allotment for the federal government. It is appointed to reconvene on January 3 — the aftermost day the accompaniment has to accurately accredit the results. The one admonition is if aldermanic negotiators abort to ability a accord on government spending and Congress is affected to break in affair amid Christmas and New Year s Day. While that is a possibility, affairs are greater that Congress would accede to accumulate the government adjourned until ancient in aboriginal January, acceptance assembly and their staffs to be home over the holidays.The carnality president, in his role as admiral of the Senate, about swears in new senators. A agent can be designated, should he become bare to accomplish this duty. He will administrate the oath, in which the senator-elect promises to support and avert the Constitution. Once the adjuration is taken, Jones will clearly be a senator.Note: An beforehand adaptation of this adventure was appear afore the acclamation Tuesday.Ted Barrett contributed to this report.

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