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Supreme Court rejects Gohmert's last-ditch election suit against Pence

Supreme Court rejects Gohmert's last-ditch election suit against Pence

The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a last-ditch lawsuit by Rep. Louie GohmertLouis (Louie) Buller GohmertDemocrat moves to censure three Republicans for downplaying Jan. 6 Gohmert says Jan. 6 mob attack on Capitol not an 'armed insurrection' Pence to give keynote address at National Conservative Student Conference MORE (R-Texas) that sought to expand Vice President Pence's legal authority to effectively overturn President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenVirginia GOP gubernatorial nominee acknowledges Biden was 'legitimately' elected BuzzFeed News finds Biden's private Venmo account Kid reporter who interviewed Obama dies at 23 MORE’s electoral win.

The justices' denial of Gohmert's bid, which took the form of a brief unsigned order, came after Congress certified Biden's victory early Thursday morning.

Election law experts had expected Gohmert’s effort to fail, after the suit's quick dismissal by lower federal courts in recent weeks.

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Gohmert and his co-plaintiffs, which included Arizona Republican Party Chairwoman Kelli Ward and other Republicans, filed their Supreme Court request Wednesday, just moments before Pence began presiding over a joint session of Congress to finalize President TrumpDonald TrumpVirginia GOP gubernatorial nominee acknowledges Biden was 'legitimately' elected Biden meets with DACA recipients on immigration reform Overnight Health Care: States begin lifting mask mandates after new CDC guidance | Walmart, Trader Joe's will no longer require customers to wear masks | CDC finds Pfizer, Moderna vaccines 94 percent effective in health workers MORE’s electoral defeat.

The session was interrupted when a mob incited by Trump breached the U.S. Capitol in a violent attack. Lawmakers returned hours later to complete certification of the 2020 presidential election results.

The far-fetched legal effort by Gohmert sought to permit Pence to sidestep federal election law during the electoral vote count in Congress. Had the unrealistic bid succeeded, it would have allowed Pence to dispense with his statutory duty to finalize Biden’s win and effectively grant himself and Trump a second term.

Pence said publicly that he lacked the legal authority to undertake such a maneuver. In a letter to Congress released just moments before Wednesday's joint session convened, Pence said he did not have the "unilateral authority" to reject electoral votes.

Updated at 1:42 p.m.