The group of electors that has been trying to get at least thirty-seven of their fellows to vote for an alternative to President-elect Donald Trump received its second set down in federal court this week.
A similar suit in Colorado to release electors from being forced to vote for the winner of the popular vote was thrown out on Monday.
The so-called “Hamilton electors” were hoping to create a situation that would allow neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton from receiving the necessary 270 electoral votes to win the presidency, which would then throw the election to the House of Representatives. The House being solidly Republican with even guys like Speaker Paul Ryan supporting Trump as the President-elect at this point is a dead on arrival scenario.
Regardless, the faithless electors from Washington state, P. Bret Chiafalo and Levi Guerra, filed a lawsuit in hopes of being relieved from the fine electors face if they don’t vote for the winner of the popular vote. The amount of the fine was estimated at between $1,000 – $3,900.
The preliminary hearing drew a lot of attention from both the media as well as those interested in the proceedings from a legal standpoint. At least two other federal court judges were seated in the audience.
The lawsuit was amusing in and of itself.
The reasons listed in the lawsuit for why they Donald Trump is unfit for office included among other things, “his scientifically baseless belief that climate change and global warming are a “hoax,” his temperament — no argument there — and oddly enough his choice of Betsy DeVos as the Secretary of Education.
The claims against Vice President-elect Mike Pence are even more laughable as it clearly shows their simple partisan contempt for Christians and conservatives.
Plaintiffs believe that Michael Pence is unfit for office due to, among other factors, his refusal to comply with federal law including Obergefell v. Hodges and Roe v. Wade; his hostility toward the freedom of and from religion (particularly any religion other than Christianity); his scientifically baseless belief that evolution, climate change, and global warming are “myths;” his support for “conversion therapy” which seeks to “convert” gay, lesbian and transgender people; and his discriminatory policies and statements regarding communities of color.”
It’s a wonder the judge didn’t laugh at them.
Not to be outdone, the plaintiff’s attorney tried to play up the Broadway musical Hamilton as a reason for why people were so interested and now care so much about what the author of The Federalist Papers wrote about the Electoral College.
Attorney: "we're talking about Alexander Hamilton and I think that creates a level of intrigue because of the popularity of the musical."
— Lindsay Cohen (@lindsaycohen) December 14, 2016
Judge James Robart was not impressed and rejected the suits basis that the elector’s vote was a First Amendment issue. He stated that “The plaintiffs voluntarily chose to become presidential electors and subjected themselves to the rules and law of that position.”
The lawyers for Chiafolo and Guerra said they would be filing an appeal, however, the Washington electors will vote on Monday in Olympia as per the U.S. Constitution.