Trump’s lawyer: Pence misrepresented what Trump asked for on Jan. 6
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WASHINGTON, D.C., January 14, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — President Trump’s constitutional lawyer John Eastman said that Vice President Mike Pence misrepresented what he was asked to do while presiding over the certification of the Electoral College votes.
“I think he’s exaggerating what the request was,” said Eastman in a late interview on January 6, according to a WND report.
The constitutional scholar and former Supreme Court clerk said Pence was not asked to unilaterally decide the results of the election. “That’s not what he was being asked; that’s not what we asked him this morning, and that’s not what the president asked him this morning,” said Eastman.
The lawyer referenced how Pence began his three-page letter issued just prior to the start of the joint session of Congress on January 6, explicitly acknowledging that there were “numerous instances of officials setting aside state election law.”
“That means we have several slates of electors that were illegally given,” Eastman explained.
“And what [Pence] had been asked to do is recognize that they had been illegally given and send it back to the state legislatures and allow them — and they’re the proper constitutional authority in this instance — to allow them to assess the situation in their own states and decide whether they can ratify the existing slate of electors or whether they were fraudulently given and should be altered,” he said.
Pence stated in his letter that it was “my considered judgment that my oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not.”
Eastman responded that the fundamental question is whether or not Pence should allow the ratification of electoral votes “that we know were illegally cast, as he acknowledged at the front end of the letter.”
“And I’m sorry, a little petty statute against the constitutional obligation not to allow our Constitution to be shredded by allowing illegally cast electoral votes to decide the election? That should be an easy call,” the attorney said.
According to WND, “his reference was to the Electoral Count Act of 1877, a law deemed unconstitutional by many scholars that minimizes the role of Congress in certifying the vote.”
Just prior to the certification of the election, over 100 state lawmakers from battleground states petitioned Vice President Mike Pence for a delay of Congress’s certification of election results from their states. The lawmakers cited the need for further review of unresolved issues and fraud allegations.
This requested proposal resembled one being pushed by a group of 11 GOP senators who vowed to object to swing state electors apart from an emergency 10-day audit of election returns in the disputed states.
Before Congress went into emergency recess on January 6, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) provided a rationale on the floor for a “third option,” as well.
Following the release of Vice President Pence’s letter, senior legal counsel to President Trump, Jenna Ellis tweeted, “I am deeply disappointed in @Mike_Pence. The Constitution constrains, yes, and that’s why we worked hard to provide him with a constitutional option to protect election integrity. BUT, he should not have been in that position — state leadership was cowardly first; SCOTUS was also.”
“We cannot preserve a republic if those in power fail to protect it. What happened to standing up honorably and putting God, country, family above one’s self? This is not over. We have to restore election integrity in our nation and with it, our founding principles and values,” she said.
I am deeply disappointed in @Mike_Pence. The Constitution constrains, yes, and that’s why we worked hard to provide him with a constitutional option to protect election integrity.— Jenna Ellis (@JennaEllisEsq) January 6, 2021
BUT, he should not have been in that position—state leadership was cowardly first; SCOTUS was also.