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More than half of House Republicans support Texas lawsuit challenging election results

Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) speaks as House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) looks on during a news conference Thursday in Washington. (Michael Reynolds/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)

A majority of House Republicans have signed onto an amicus brief in a Texas lawsuit seeking unprecedented judicial intervention in disallowing millions of votes and the election results from four key swing states that went for President-elect Joe Biden.

Rep. Mike Johnson (R-La.), head of the conservative Republican Study Committee, spearheaded the effort to round up support on Capitol Hill. Johnson emailed all House Republicans on Wednesday to solicit signatures for the long-shot Texas case after Trump called. The congressman told his colleagues that the president “will be anxiously awaiting the final list to review.”

In all, 106 of the 196 House Republicans signed on to the amicus brief filed to the Supreme Court. They include most of Trump’s allies on Capitol Hill but notably few members of House Republican leadership. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (La.) is the only GOP leader in the chamber to sign on to the brief.

Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin on Dec. 10 urged the Supreme Court to reject a lawsuit filed by Texas to overturn the results of the election. (Video: Reuters)

Hours after the filing, Rep. Jackie Walorski (Ind.) tweeted that she supported the lawsuit but wasn’t included on the list due to a clerical error.

Which Republicans support the Texas lawsuit challenging the election results

The GOP response underscores the party’s fealty to the lame-duck president and Republicans’ fear of drawing his wrath and that of his supporters ahead of midterm elections in 2022 — and potential primary challenges from the right.

In the lawsuit, Texas is seeking to sue Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia — all swing states Trump won in 2016 and Biden carried in 2020 — to void the election results, which it said were tainted. Trump has encouraged the suit, calling it “the big one” and seeking to intervene.

It is unknown when the justices will decide whether to accept the case, which seeks to take advantage of the allowance that suits between states may be filed directly at the Supreme Court.

But the targeted states said on Thursday that any claims in the filings have already been examined by lower courts and dismissed.

Biden won the election with 306 electoral college votes to Trump’s 232, and he leads the national popular vote by more than 7 million. Trump, who has refused to concede, has repeatedly pushed baseless claims and outright falsehoods, insisting the election was rigged.

There has been no evidence of widespread fraud in the election, and last week Attorney General William P. Barr said the Justice Department has found no evidence of widespread fraud that would overturn Biden’s victory.

Where Republicans in Congress stand on Trump’s false claim of winning the election

Nonetheless, the signatories’ claim that the election “has been riddled with an unprecedented number of serious allegations of fraud and irregularities.”

The signatories urged the court to “provide an objective review of these anomalies and to determine for the people if indeed the Constitution has been followed and the rule of law maintained.”

“Because the Framers recognized elections could be corrupted or stolen, they created the Electoral College as a safeguard and empowered state legislatures to ensure the integrity of our unique election system,” the brief states. “Yet before the 2020 election, rationalized in some instances by the occasion of the novel coronavirus pandemic, the constitutional authority of state legislatures was simply usurped by various governors, state courts, state election officials, and others.”

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A handful of Republicans on Thursday spoke out against the effort. Among them was Rep. Chip Roy (R-Tex.), who said on Twitter that the case “represents a dangerous violation of federalism” and “sets a precedent to have one state asking federal courts to police the voting procedures of other states.”

“I cannot support an effort that will almost certainly fail on grounds of standing and is inconsistent with my beliefs about protecting Texas sovereignty from the meddling of other states,” Roy said.

In a video, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) said it was time to move ahead in acknowledging the outcome.

“The election was real — it counts — and we need to move forward. Failing to accept this reality puts the country in a very dangerous moment in time,” Kinzinger said.

Keith Newell contributed to this report.