Four Washington electors broke rank on Monday (19 December) and refused to vote for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton as they cast their Electoral College ballots. Clinton had won the state's 12 electoral votes on Election Day, when she defeated President-elect Donald Trump with 54% of the vote.
Three faithless electors opted to vote for former Secretary of State Colin Powell, while another voted for Faith Spotted Eagle, The Hill reports. The Sioux tribe elder has led the Dakota Access Pipeline protests in North Dakota.
Elector Bred Chiafalo told The Associated Press that he originally planned to vote for Republican Ohio Governor John Kasich but decided to vote for Powell instead after speaking to other Washington electors.
Chiafalo, who co-founded a group called the Hamilton Electors, hoped to block Trump by encouraging electors on both sides of the aisle to unite behind an alternative Republican candidate.
According to The AP, faithless electors in Washington face a $1,000 (£807) penalty for ignoring the results of the state's popular vote. The penalty fine was established by the state legislature in 1976 after Mike Padden - now a Republican state senator - voted for Ronald Reagan instead of Gerald Ford, the state's winner.
The state's electors also strayed from the party's vice presidential nominee, Virginia Senator Tim Kaine. Kaine received eight votes, while the remaining four votes went to Senators Elizabeth Warren (Massachusetts), Maria Cantwell (Washington) and Susan Collins (Maine), as well as environmentalist Winona LaDuke.
The Hill noted that three other Democratic electors in Maine, Colorado and Minnesota attempted to not vote for Clinton but were force to by state laws. Despite continued efforts to sway electors to bar Trump from officially winning the presidency, most electors are expected to vote within party lines.
By Monday afternoon, no Republican electors had voted for someone other than the president-elect. According to The Hill, the anticipated totals on Election Day give 306 electoral votes to Trump and 232 to Clinton.