President Donald Trump put his feeble legal muscle behind Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s long-shot effort to overturn the 2020 election—and again forgot about the 1960 presidential campaign of the man whose slogan he appropriated.
Hours after social media mocked Trump’s incorrect Twitter claim that no president had ever carried Florida and Ohio (as he did) and lost a presidential election, new campaign lawyer and Kamala Harris birther John C. Eastman repeated the same error in his Supreme Court motion arguing that Trump should be allowed to join the suit. In fact, Richard Nixon did just that in his failed 1960 campaign against John F. Kennedy, a defeat he avenged in 1968 with invocations about a “silent majority” of Americans, now a favorite phrase of Trump’s.
Eastman’s brief otherwise repeats the campaign’s longstanding and unsuccessful assertions that Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Georgia did not comply with their statehouse’s rules for selecting electors, as mandated under the U.S. Constitution. It makes no specific allegations of fraud—and claims it doesn’t have to.
“It is not necessary for the plaintiff in intervention to prove that fraud occurred,” Eastman wrote. “The constitutional issue is not whether voters committed fraud but whether state officials violated the law by systematically loosening the measures for ballot integrity so that fraud becomes undetectable.”