December 8, 2020

Texas likes to be known for doing everything bigger than the rest of the states, and that seems to apply to its level of stupid. Their attorney general, Ken Paxton (not exactly a tower of legal integrity himself...) is suing four battleground states Donald Trump needs to overturn the election in his favor.

Yeah, Paxton is suing Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Michigan for enacting measures to protect its electorate against COVID-19 while voting.

In the suit, he claims that pandemic-era changes to election procedures in those states violated federal law, and asks the U.S. Supreme Court to block the states from voting in the Electoral College.

Nicolle Wallace discussed the absurdity of this last ditch effort, which got filed right before the deadline of December 8th/Safe Harbor Day — the day Congress must accept the electoral votes submitted by the states — with legal analyst Andrew Weissmann. Wallace called the lack of facts and evidence backing up Paxton's claims "asinine," and wondered about sanctions for attorneys and AGs who bring such frivolous suits to the courts at all. Weissmann, though, found himself in the unfamiliar position of playing optimist.

Sort of.

WEISSMANN: You know, I'm usually on this show and elsewhere a huge cynic, but I actually think there is some good news here, which is I think that the courts have handled this admirably. And you've seen courts, whether they were appointed by Republicans or Democrats, judges appointed by president Trump rejecting these claims. So I don't think that the courts are where we have a problem. In other words, they have withstood the conspiracy theory onslaught and have been uniformly rejecting any substance of these claims. But I think the problem is in the populous, is in the electorate, where we have such a huge percentage of people who believe in conspiracy theories, and have themselves such doubt in what are really not controversial facts. And a lot of people feed on that and foment it and I think that's the problem. I think the courts have done as well as can be expected, which is at least some good news.

I mean, it's scary as hell that so much of the populace buys into this crap, and the question of how long it will take fully half of the nation to have faith in our elections (they might lose) once again is depressing as all get out. Don't even get me started on what kind of undertaking is needed to deprogram the psyches of these delusional Republican voters who really do believe that Trump won and the GOP is on their side. That really *IS* the problem, isn't it?

But I guess we can take solace, like Weissmann says, in the courts holding strong against these suits. Wallace asked him about the likelihood of Trump's fever dream of the Supreme Court getting involved to make him King coming true, and again, he reassured.

WEISSMANN: I just can't imagine the Supreme Court will enter into this fray with this vehicle. . There may be other attorneys general like Paxton who are facing their own legal issues who want to distract from that and show their loyalty to the president, so you could see people trying to do, for instance, what Ted Cruz does, and get their 15 minutes of fame. But I really don't think this has any merit. And even for people who think that the courts are political, I really think this is just going too far.

And, as if on cue, the Supreme Court's Justice Alito — ALITO!!! — denied Pennsylvania GOP Congressman Mike Kelly's request to overturn Joe Biden's win there, with zero dissents. Zero.

Texas' AG Paxton must be sweating in places I care not to imagine right now.

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