While some Republicans are reportedly shying away from publicly supporting President Donald Trump’s claims of widespread election fraud, Sen. Ted Cruz is running toward the fire, so to speak.
The Texas Republican said Monday he will help plaintiffs in Pennsylvania argue their election fraud case before the U.S. Supreme Court if justices accept it, which is not a certainty at this point.
“Because of the importance of the legal issues presented, I’ve publicly urged #SCOTUS to hear the case brought by Congressman Mike Kelly, congressional candidate Sean Parnell & state rep. candidate Wanda Logan challenging the constitutionality of the POTUS election results in PA,” he wrote on Twitter.
Because of the importance of the legal issues presented, I've publicly urged #SCOTUS to hear the case brought by Congressman Mike Kelly, congressional candidate Sean Parnell & state rep. candidate Wanda Logan challenging the constitutionality of the POTUS election results in PA.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 7, 2020
“Petitioners’ legal team has asked me whether I would be willing to argue the case before #SCOTUS, if the Court grants certiorari. I have agreed, and told them that, if the Court takes the appeal, I will stand ready to present the oral argument,” he continued.
“As I said last week, the bitter division and acrimony we see across the Nation needs resolution. I believe #SCOTUS has a responsibility to the American People to ensure, within its powers, that we are following the law and following the Constitution,” Cruz wrote.
As I said last week, the bitter division and acrimony we see across the Nation needs resolution. I believe #SCOTUS has a responsibility to the American People to ensure, within its powers, that we are following the law and following the Constitution.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) December 7, 2020
The petitioners argue that an election reform law passed in the state before the COVID-19 pandemic known as Act 77, violates the state and federal constitutions.
The law created a “no-excuse mail-in” voting system that Kelly says violates a provision of the Pennsylvania Constitution that only allows limited reasons for voting by mail. As such, petitioners say the law must be struck down as invalid and the 2020 election, conducted under Act 77, tossed out as questionable.
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The suit was already rejected by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which ruled that Kelly and the petitioners should have brought their case sooner. But in addition to the Act 77 violation, Pennsylvania officials also extended the voting deadline this year by three days, which is also not permitted by state law.
That said, supporters of the suit say the nation’s highest court has an obligation to take and decide the case because it has constitutional implications for the country as a whole moving forward.
Constitutional expert, lawyer, and author Mark Levin, who praised Cruz’s decision on his nightly radio show Monday, has argued that even though states are generally in charge of elections, potentially-tainted outcomes become a federal issue because state elections determine presidential electors.
If the elector outcome in any state is achieved in violation of that state’s own election law, he notes, then the determination of the presidential electors becomes tainted.
“My concern is if the Supreme Court does not properly resolve the constitutional issue, then the lid is off for states to do anything they want to influence the outcome of choice of electors,” he said, noting that he is aware of some GOP lawmakers — whom he did not identify — who have said they want no part of the case.
“[The U.S. Constitution’s] Article II’s plenary power will now mean all power, including brazenly unlawful act. Perhaps if the state legislature were to pass a law that said only Democrats could be electors, that might pass muster. Where will the line be drawn if not here and now?” Levin continued.
“If a state legislature, a state supreme court, and the executive, all participate in various forms of unconstitutional conduct for the purpose of selecting electors in a wholly federal process of selecting a president and vice president, the damage to the integrity, validity, and lawfulness of the entire process is gravely affected,” he added. “That’s the problem few are focusing on.”
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