It is the latest, and possibly the last, in a desperate effort by President Donald Trump and his allies to hold on to power in the face of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory. In his lawsuit, Gohmert states that he expects more than 140 members of the House to take part in Biden’s victory on January 6th. He also noted that House GOP Leader Kevin McCarthy and GOP Whip Steve Scalise diverge from the House’s legal arguments against Gohmert’s lawsuit.
While Gohmert’s protracted efforts would undo the democratic election results, his lawyers claim repealing the 130-year-old law that governs how Congress counts votes – and puts all power in Pence’s hands – is the best way to go, a deeply divided one Person to heal nation.
“By reaffirming the constitutional requirements and procedures for ruling on the presidential elections and granting the requested relief, the Court of Justice can create the conditions for a calm and lasting resolution of all objections and help pave the way for a reliable and peaceful conclusion for the President pave the electoral process, ”wrote Gohmert’s lawyers.
Gohmert’s recent claim argues that through his attorneys Pence minimizes and even trivializes his role – by retiring into a position of “glorified envelope opener”.
Although the twelfth amendment to the constitution requires Pence to chair the January 6th session as vice president, his powers are set out in the Electoral Count Act of 1887. Pence must introduce voters alphabetically by state, and it becomes a process for House members and Senators to challenge controversial voters.
Under the Electoral Count Act, that challenge would be resolved through separate House and Senate votes – and in the case of the 2020 elections, those challenges would effectively be doomed. The majority of the Democratic House would surely oppose them, and the tightly-knit Senate includes a number of Republicans who have recognized that Biden is the clear winner of the competition.
If Pence refused to accept enough votes to bring one of the candidates above the 270-vote threshold, Gohmert said in his lawsuit, the election would be based on a procedure that is also set out in the Twelfth Amendment and that is governed by state delegations give a single, thrown vote. That wording would favor Republicans, who are in the minority of the House but control more state delegations than Democrats.
Pence on Thursday urged the court Reject Gohmert’s lawsuit against him, arguing that his battle is with the House and Senate, not the Vice President who would be empowered if Gohmert wins. Pence failed to provide his own view of his power as chairman on Jan. 6, and he hasn’t indicated whether he intends to introduce the unofficial voter lists that Trump allies allegedly cast to compete with the certified lists submitted in states like Arizona, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Georgia.
The house submitted its own, more detailed briefDismantling Gohmert’s efforts as an unconstitutional and barely veiled effort to override the democratic result of the 2020 elections. The House argued that the authors never envisaged a process that would enable a seated vice-president – often, as in this case, an actual candidate for election to the electoral college – to unilaterally decide which voters should be counted.
But Gohmert’s new brief assertion that Pence is the correct defendant in the case also says that the Congressman could add the United States MPs or the House of Representatives or Senate as defendants if that clarified Gohmert’s right to relief.
The Justice Department attorneys representing Pence claim that Pence is not a real or logical defendant in Gohmert’s lawsuit and that any complaint by the Congressman rests with the House, the Senate, or both.
Gohmert’s efforts received additional support on Friday from Republicans, who would have cast votes for Trump had he won Michigan. The group submitted a 44-page letter arguing that the current rules for counting votes in Congress should be removed so that pence alone decides the outcome.
U.S. District Court judge Jeremy Kernodle, a Trump appointee who sits in Tyler, Texas, has not scheduled a hearing on Gohmert’s lawsuit or when the court can rule. However, the judge set a quick schedule for filing the case, including the unusual New Year’s Day deadline for the Congressman’s final assignment.
Gohmert has claimed that he needs Kernodle to make a decision by January 4th to resolve possible objections before the January 6th meeting.