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Clarence Thomas was ‘key’ to plan to delay 2020 election certification, Trump lawyers say in emails


A lawyer for former President Donald Trump has described Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas as ‘key’ to Trump’s plan to delay congressional certification of President Joe Biden’s victory through litigation after the 2020 election, according to emails recently delivered to the House select committee investigating in January. 6.

“We want to frame things so that Thomas can be the one to issue” a temporary order questioning Georgia’s results, Trump attorney Kenneth Chesebro wrote in a Dec. 31, 2020, email, adding that a Thomas’ favorable order was their “only chance” to prevent Congress from counting electoral votes for Biden of Georgia.

John Eastman, another Trump attorney, responded to that email saying he agreed with the plan. In email exchanges with several other lawyers working on Trump’s legal team, they were discussing the filing of a complaint that they hoped would result in an order that “ATTENTIVELY” considered Biden’s electoral votes in Georgia were invalid due to electoral fraud.

Having a case pending in the Supreme Court, Chesebro wrote, would be enough to prevent the Senate from counting Biden voters. Thomas would end up being “the key here,” Chesebro wrote, noting that Thomas is the judge assigned to handle emergency cases from the southeast part of the county.

The email referring to Thomas was first reported by Politico. It is one of a series of emails the House obtained from Eastman, pursuant to a court order, that are still the subject of litigation in an appeals court. The emails were available via a link in a court filing submitted by the House committee early Wednesday.

U.S. District Judge David Carter previously determined the emails showed evidence of potential criminal activity in Trump’s efforts to reverse his election defeat, concluding the Trump team was using the litigation not to seek redress judiciary but to meddle in congressional proceedings. Carter, in ruling last month that the emails should be released to the House committee, said some of them showed evidence of obstruction of official process.

In a separate email, one of the attorneys, Chesebro, acknowledged their plans were long, putting the odds of success in the Supreme Court ahead of Congressional certification on Jan. 6 at “1%.”

This story has been updated with additional details.

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