Help a Colleague By Suing Him?

VP Mike Pence is a Defendant in Suit to Empower Him to Reject Electoral Votes
By: Public Interest Law Professor John Banzhaf
WASHINGTON - Jan. 1, 2021 - PRLog -- It sounds contradictory, but some lawmakers have named Vice President Mike Pence as a defendant in a law suit seeking to expand his powers to include the ability to reject Electoral College votes.

But, to his credit, Pence has rejected the help - which would put him in a unique and difficult position - and has moved the court to dismiss the law suit, and himself as the named defendant, says public interest law professor John Banzhaf.

Pence argues that he is not a proper defendant, and even suggests that the named plaintiff, Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, may not be a proper plaintiff.

The novel law suit, filed by Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas and others, attempts to force Pence to refuse to accept electoral votes of several states contested by President Donald Trump when Congress meets to certify the 2020 presidential election next week.

But a filing on behalf of Pence suggests that: " A suit to establish that the Vice President has discretion over the count, filed against the Vice President, is a walking legal contradiction."

Pence also seems to argue that Gohmert has no legal standing to initiate the law suit since he has not suffered the required "injury in fact" required by the Constitution.

His motion points out that "Ironically, Representative Gohmert's position, if adopted by the Court, would actually deprive him of his opportunity as a Member of the House under the Electoral Count Act to raise objections to the counting of electoral votes, and then to debate and vote on them."

Even the House of Representatives itself weighed in against this Member's law suit, using unusually strong language by calling it a "radical departure from our constitutional procedures and consistent legislative practices" since it would deprive the House of an important role and function regarding the election of the president."

Banzhaf, who has brought and won several unusual outside-the-box law suits, nevertheless says that suing someone to give him an additional authority he does not already have is doomed to fail.

While he would be delighted if his law school colleagues named him as a defendant in a law suit to establish that he has the authority to raise his own salary,or  give himself a larger law school office. @profbanzhaf

Source:Public Interest Law Professor John Banzhaf
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