NEW YORK – Members of the Electoral College should have the right to consider the alleged impact of Russian interference in the U.S. presidential election when they cast their votes on December 19, a Democratic congressman has asserted.

“To the extent that foreign interference in the United States presidential elections may have influenced the final result, I believe the electors have the right to consider that,” Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.) told POLITICO in a statement on Saturday.

Politico further reported:

Cicilline appears to be the first member of Congress and the highest-ranking elected official in the country to endorse the notion that electors aren’t simply rubber stamps for their states’ popular vote. Earlier Saturday, he retweeted a Rhode Island-based national security expert who argued that the intelligence community “must brief electoral college about Russia before vote.”

Cicilline was referring to reports in the Washington Post and New York Times claiming Moscow interfered in the presidential election to help Donald Trump win — a contention the President-elect called  “ridiculous” in an interview on Sunday.

Cicilline’s comments come after a Democratic presidential elector from California filed a lawsuit aiming to overturn a California statute that requires him and the states’ other electors to support the winner of the popular vote in the state with the aim of voting for someone else. The lawsuit, the second of its kind nationwide, is clearly part of an effort to set a legal precedent to free any rogue Republican electors in other states to cast their ballots for someone other than Trump.

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