GOP Lawmaker Sues Mike Pence in One Last Attempt to Overturn the Election
In an unusual legal maneuver executed Monday, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) has filed a federal lawsuit against Vice President Mike Pence. The goal of the lawsuit? To imbue Pence with the “exclusive authority” to determine whether or not to certify the results of Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory. In the suit, Gohmert makes the case that since there have been competing sets of electors from certain states calling the race for Trump, Pence is therefore endowed with the “sole discretion” to determine which electors should be certified by Congress.
Gohmert goes further in his lawsuit, insisting that if the election is contested, Pence is required by the Constitution to kick the election back to the House of Representatives for a final decision.
“Vice-President Pence determines which slate of electors’ votes count, or neither, for that State,” reads Gohmert’s complaint. “If no candidate has a majority of 270 elector votes, then the House of Representatives (and only the House of Representatives) shall choose the President.”
While it may seem somewhat counterproductive to put the election into the hands of Nancy Pelosi and her Democratic House majority, that’s not actually how a contested result would play out. Instead, state lawmakers from those represented in Congress would determine their own state results. Since Republicans hold a significant majority when it comes to state legislatures, the election would almost certainly be decided in favor of Trump.
“Under the Twelfth Amendment, defendant Pence alone has the exclusive authority and sole discretion to open and permit the counting of electoral votes or a given state and when there are competing slates of electors or where there is objection to any single slate of electors, to determine which electors’ votes or whether none should be counted,” the lawsuit says.
This lawsuit would give Pence the legal authority to select alternative Republican electors in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The Biden wins in those states have been official certified, but they are disputed by the president and his legal team.
In a statement, Gohmert said, “Thanks to spineless politicians, corrupt state officials and a coordinated effort to undermine the will of the American people in favor of business as usual in the D.C. swamp, we now find ourselves in a place where a stolen election becomes just another one of the miscarriages of justice this town refuses to remedy. […] For the sake of the future of our Republic, come January 6th, Vice President Pence must be authorized to uphold the legal votes of millions of Americans and preserve our nation’s great experiment in self-governance.”
He certainly makes a point, but at this stage in the game, all we can say is: Don’t get your hopes up.