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The Eastman Memo—Poor Lawyering for a Disreputable Cause

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Jonathan H. Adler | 9.21.2021 9:06 AM

CNN has obtained a copy of a memo authored by former law professor John Eastman outlining a strategy to have Donald Trump declared the victor of the 2020 election. The Washington Post had previously reported on the memo's existence and circulation to Republican Senators by the White House.

The memo, reportedly authored and distributed in advance of the January 6 electoral vote count, suggests a scenario under which Vice President Pence excludes the electoral votes of seven states—on the false pretense that competing slates of electors had been submitted by those states—so as to give Trump a majority of the electoral votes cast. This false claim is apparently one reason why GOP Senators did not endorse the strategy.

From the Post account (which draws from the new book, Peril by Robert Costa and Bob Woodward):

[Utah Republican Senator Mike] Lee knew dueling electors were merely Trump loyalists putting themselves forward in certain states, in a move the authors describe as "a social media campaign — an amateur push with no legal standing." Electors are generally bound by the popular........

© Reason.com

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