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‘If I don’t have standing, no one does’: Gohmert responds to judge throwing out Pence lawsuit

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A Trump-appointed federal judge threw out House Republican Louie Gohmert’s lawsuit on Friday that targeted giving Vice President Mike Pence the power to overturn the results of the presidential election won by Joe Biden when Congress formally counts the Electoral College votes next week. It was a last-ditch effort to stop Joe Biden from becoming the next President of the United States.

Pence is president of the Senate and will oversee the session Wednesday and declare the winner of the White House race. It’s mostly a ceremonial role. Biden won the Electoral College vote this month 306-232. Numerous legal battles by President Trump’s campaign have failed to overturn the election.

Vice President Pence was named in the suit as the defendant and the court was asked to throw out the 1887 law that spells out how Congress handles the vote counting. It asserted that Pence “may exercise the exclusive authority and sole discretion in determining which electoral votes to count for a given State.”

Along with Gohmert and Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward, Students for Trump COO Tyler Bowyer, Arizona Republican Party Executive Director Greg Safsten, and Maricopa County Republicans Second Vice Chair Nancy Cottle were asking Kernodle to let Pence declare who the electors are on Jan. 6.

In response, Gohmert stated: “In effect, the ruling would be that you’ve got to go to the streets and be as violent as Antifa and BLM.”

In an order of dismissal on Friday, Kernodle wrote that plaintiffs lack standing to bring the legal action that would prevent Pence from confirming Joe Biden’s electoral victory.

“Plaintiff Louie Gohmert, the United States Representative for Texas’s First Congressional District, alleges at most an institutional injury to the House of Representatives. Under well-settled Supreme Court authority, that is insufficient to support standing,” he wrote.

“The other Plaintiffs, the slate of Republican Presidential Electors for the State of Arizona (the “Nominee-Electors”), allege an injury that is not fairly traceable to the Defendant, the Vice President of the United States, and is unlikely to be redressed by the requested relief,” he added.

Gohmert and other Republicans argued in their lawsuit against Pence that the U.S. Constitution clearly outlines the protocol for when alternate slates of electors are presented to the president of the Senate. They say the president of the Senate has “exclusive authority and sole discretion under the 12th Amendment to determine which slates of electors for a state, or neither, may be counted.”

The Justice Department represented Pence who filed to have the case dismissed. In a court filing in Texas on Thursday, the department said the plaintiffs “have sued the wrong defendant” — if, in fact, any of those suing actually have “a judicially cognizable claim.”

They claim that the suit objects to long-standing procedures laid out in the law, “not any actions that Vice President Pence has taken,” so he should not be the target of the suit.

“A suit to establish that the Vice President has discretion over the count, filed against the Vice President, is a walking legal contradiction,” the department posited.

All of this is to fight alleged voter fraud. Although there have been credible claims concerning fraud, a wide range of so-called nonpartisan election officials have deigned to not even consider it a possibility. That includes former Attorney General William Barr, who said he saw no reason to appoint a special counsel to look into the president’s claims about the 2020 election. He resigned from his post last week.

Republican electors in seven battleground states cast alternative slates of votes for President Trump on Dec. 14, asserting that Trump was the true winner in those states. They alleged that election fraud took place, and contested election officials who declared a win for Biden.

The allegations of voter fraud are fracturing the Republican Party.

In a brief filed on New Year’s Day, Gohmert wrote that he and 140 Republicans in the House plan to object to the counting of electors that states certified for Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden on Jan. 6.

At least one senator is needed to sustain a challenge. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) has said he will object.

Gohmert argued that Pence is more powerful than a “glorified envelope-opener in chief.”

“Under the Constitution, he has the authority to conduct that proceeding as he sees fit,” Gohmert wrote.

“He may count elector votes certified by a state’s executive, or he can prefer a competing slate of duly qualified electors. He may ignore all electors from a certain state. That is the power bestowed upon him by the Constitution.”

Trump and his allies have filed approximately 50 lawsuits challenging election results, and nearly all have been dismissed or dropped. He’s also lost twice in front of the Supreme Court. But supporters will not give up the fight. They are adamant that the election was stolen through voter fraud. Gohmert’s case dismissal is yet one more shot in an ongoing war over voter fraud that is sure to go hot in 2021.

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