John Eastman knew that both plans to steal the election for loser Donald Trump were illegal, but felt comfortable that the Supreme Court would allow them to get away with it by choosing not to get involved by citing the political question doctrine. This is the testimony of Greg Jacob, Pence’s former general counsel.
“But he thought that we could do so because in his view, the Electoral Count Act was unconstitutional and when I raised concerns that the position likely lose in court, his view was that the court simply wouldn’t get involved. They would invoke the political question doctrine and therefore we could have some comfort proceeding with that path,” then Vice President’s general counsel Greg Jacob testified on June 16, 2021 during the third hearing of the January 6th Select Committee.
Transcript Greg Jacob:
During the meeting on January 4th, Mr. Eastman was opining that there were two legally viable arguments as to authorities that the Vice President could exercise, two days later on January 6th.
One of them was that he could reject electoral votes outright. The other was that he could use his capacity as presiding officer to suspend the proceedings. And declare, essentially, a ten-day recess, during which states — , a list of 5 to 7 states that the exact number changed from conversation a conversation, but the vice president could sort of issue a demand to the state legislatures in those states to re-examine the election and declare who had won each of those states.
So he said that both of those were legally viable options. He said that he did not recommend upon questioning, he did not recommend what he called the more aggressive option which was to reject outright, because he thought that that would be less politically palatable.
That the perimeter of state legislator authority would be necessary to ultimately have public acceptance of an outcome in favor of President Trump and so he advocated that the preferred course of action will be the procedural route of suspending the joint session and sending the election back to the states.
And now, having established that Trump and Eastman had two courses of action – both they knew were illegal – and had settled on the one they thought they could trick the most people into falling for — the more “politically palatable” option — we get to the most terrifying moment in this entire debacle so far, because unlike Mike Pence, our Supreme Court is stacked with unqualified and qualified but extremely partisan Trump hacks.
Jacob testifies about Eastman, "When I raised concerns that position likely lose in court, his view was that the court simply wouldn't get involved. They would invoke the political question and therefore we could have some comfort proceeding with that path." pic.twitter.com/JkfF8Xa00s
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) June 16, 2022
Transcript (emphasis mine):
So during that meeting on the fourth, I think I raised the problem that both of Mr. Eastman’s proposals would violate several provisions of the Electoral Count Act.
Mr. Eastman acknowledge that that was the case. That even what he viewed as the more politically palatable option would violate several provisions. But he thought that we could do so because in his view, the Electoral Count Act was unconstitutional and when I raised concerns that the position likely lose in court, his view was that the court simply wouldn’t get involved. They would invoke the political question doctrine and therefore we could have some comfort proceeding with that path.
Eastman’s view was the court wouldn’t get involved. They would invoke the political question doctrine and let the Trump mafia steal an election.
The issue is that Eastman seems quite right about that assessment. This Supreme Court is already systemically unraveling freedoms and one of its justices is married to a radical activist who played an active role in this plot to violate the law by stealing the election. Her husband, Clarence Thomas, even voted to try to hide her involvement. He has gotten into zero trouble, while the person who leaked the court’s plan to overturn Roe v Wade is being hunted down like they are the threat to democracy.
Indeed, the Select Committee expressed an interest in speaking to Clarence’s wife Ginni on Thursday, and supposedly she is willing to speak to them.
Jacob already testified earlier Thursday that Eastman admitted on January 4th, 2021 in front of then President Trump that the scheme was illegal, which establishes for a certainty that Donald Trump knew what he was doing was illegal.
The Department of Justice announced on Thursday a criminal investigation into Trump’s election lawyers, Rudy Giuliani, John Eastman, and others, over the fake elector scheme.
Eastman assumed they had the court in their back pocket, and Americans deserve to know if they do.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.