In a curious turn of events, Vice President Mike Pence is seeking to have a lawsuit from pro-Trump Congressman Louie Gohmert dismissed, The Washington Times reported Thursday.
According to the Times, Rep. Gohmert, a Texas Republican, sued along with other plaintiffs earlier this week in an attempt to have Pence invalidate former Vice President Joe Biden’s win in the Electoral College.
According to CBS News, Biden came out on top, with 306 electoral votes to President Donald Trump’s 232, on Dec. 14.
The wrong target?
Deputy Assistant Attorney General John V. Coghlan has been appointed to represent the vice president in the suit, and he is arguing that Gohmert has set his sights on the wrong target.
“The relief that plaintiffs request does not properly lie against the Vice President,” lawyers for the Justice Department said in a Thursday filing, according to the Times.
Instead, Coghlan’s position is that the Texas congressman should be taking aim at the House and Senate, the two bodies that vote to ratify the Electoral College results. Congress will meet for that very task on Wednesday in a joint session that Pence will preside over.
“By contrast, a suit to establish that the Vice President has discretion over the count, filed against the Vice President, is a walking legal contradiction,” Justice Department lawyers said, according to the Times.
Hawley plans objection
Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) is thus far the only member of Congress’ upper chamber who has pledged to launch an objection to the certification of the Electoral College vote. On Wednesday, Hawley tweeted: “Millions of voters concerned about election integrity deserve to be heard. I will object on January 6 on their behalf.”
In a statement, Hawley explained: “I cannot vote to certify the electoral college results on January 6 without raising the fact that some states, particularly Pennsylvania, failed to follow their own state election laws.
“I cannot vote to certify without pointing out the unprecedented effort of mega corporations, including Facebook and Twitter, to interfere in this election, in support of Joe Biden,” he added, according to Fox News.
“At the very least, Congress should investigate allegations of voter fraud and adopt measures to secure the integrity of our elections,” Hawley said. “But Congress has so far failed to act.”
According to Fox, Hawley has been excoriated by Democrats and even some Republicans over the move. Both the House and Senate would need to vote in favor of invalidating a state’s electoral votes for such a motion to pass, Fox notes.