Matt Gaetz: SCOTUS decision not to hear Texas election lawsuit is blow to the power of state legislatures – Fox News

Matt Gaetz: SCOTUS decision not to hear Texas election lawsuit is blow to the power of state legislatures – Fox News

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., said that the Supreme Court’s decision not to hear a Trump-backed Texas case that would overturn election results in four states, amounted to an “erosion of power” of state legislatures. 

“The true casualty of the court’s decision is an erosion of power of state legislatures to make election law. The principal challenge by Texas was that there were changes that were made not by the state legislatures that instead were made by other officials invested in that power.” 

“All eyes are on January 6. I suspect there will be a little bit of debate and discourse.” On Jan. 6, Congress will meet to certify the results of the Electoral College vote, which will occur Monday. 

“This is not a case of the Trump campaign failing to produce evidence. It’s a failure of the court to exercise jurisdiction proficiently,” the Florida Republican continued.


Texas asked the court to take on a case that would have essentially nullified the presidential election results in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Georgia and Wisconsin.

“The State of Texas’s motion for leave to file a bill of complaint is denied for lack of standing under Article III of the Constitution,” the Supreme Court’s order reads. “Texas has not demonstrated a judicially cognizable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections. All other pending motions are dismissed as moot.”


Justices Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas said they would have heard the case — without granting other relief, like issuing an injunction on electoral proceedings. They added that they expressed “no view on any other issue.”

Texas on Friday morning had filed a “reply brief” with the Supreme Court, asking the tribunal to hear its lawsuit.

The “briefing stage” of Supreme Court litigation consists of the first party, in this instance, Texas, asking the court to hear the case. Then opposition briefs are filed by those on the other side of the case. The first party is allowed to file a “reply brief,” which Texas did Friday morning. 

“Defendant States do not seriously address grave issues that Texas raises, choosing to hide behind other court venues and decisions in which Texas could not participate and to mischaracterize both the relief that Texas seeks and the justification for that relief,” the Texas brief says of the opposition briefs filed by Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan and Georgia Thursday.

Texas continues: “An injunction should issue because Defendant States have not—and cannot—defend their actions.”

Several top Texas lawmakers, including Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen – have backed the efforts spearheaded by Texas Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton. One hundred-six Republicans in Congress filed an amicus brief supporting the Texas lawsuit.

The justices could have agreed to hear the case and promptly dismissed it or ruled in favor of Texas, or they could have requested oral arguments before ruling. They declined to hear it outright.

The crux of the Texas case was the argument that the four states it is suing — all four of which swung for President-elect Joe Biden — unconstitutionally changed election statutes in their judiciaries or executive branches, when only the legislature is allowed to make election law. The reply brief Friday says the four states failed to adequately dispute their point that this makes their entire elections invalid. 

“Defendant States do not credibly dispute either that they changed election statutes via non-legislative means or that the Electors Clause preempts such changes,” the Texas brief says. “Accordingly, Texas is likely to prevail on the merits.”

The four states in their reply briefs, meanwhile, did say that any changes that were made to their elections were consistent with laws approved by their legislatures and criticized Texas for undermining the American election process. 


Seventeen red states weighed in favor of Texas while over 20 states and territories backed Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan and Georgia. And 106 Republican House members backed the Texas suit. 

Fox News’ Tyler Olson, Shannon Bream and Bill Mears contributed to this report.

Published at Sat, 12 Dec 2020 23:00:14 +0000

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Written by Riel Roussopoulos


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