HELENA — Montana Congressman and Gov.-elect Greg Gianforte is one of 106 House Republicans Thursday who signed on to a “friend of the court” brief supporting the Texas lawsuit trying to invalidate presidential election results in four key states.
The suit, filed this week by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, is seen as a last-ditch effort by President Trump and his supporters to overturn election results that gave Democrat Joe Biden a winning total of electoral votes on Nov. 3.
Paxton is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to take the case and invalidate results in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia – all states won by Biden, with close margins.
On Wednesday, Montana Attorney General Tim Fox, a Republican, also joined 17 other states – all won by Trump, and with Republican attorneys general – in supporting the lawsuit.
Gianforte told MTN News that he’s encouraging the Supreme Court to accept the lawsuit, to “protect the integrity of the 2020 elections and elections to come” and answer “important questions that have been put forward.”
Gianforte won election as Montana’s 25th governor in the Nov. 3 election and will be sworn in Jan. 4, becoming the first GOP governor in the state in 16 years.
Last week, both he and fellow Republican U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, told MTN News that they weren’t yet acknowledging that Biden won the presidential election – although votes have been certified in all states, giving him a 306-232 electoral vote victory.
Electors from all states will meet Monday to cast their votes.
The brief signed by Gianforte and Republican U.S. House members said “unconstitutional irregularities” in the presidential election cast doubt on its outcome. The lawsuit, among other things, says the four states improperly allowed some mail ballots.
Not all Republicans are supporting the effort.
U.S. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California wouldn’t sign the brief and a Texas congressman who supports Trump called the suit “a dangerous violation of federalism (that) sets a precedent to have one state asking federal courts to police the voting procedures of other states.”
Officials in the four battleground states also have called the lawsuit a "seditious abuse of the judicial process," "legally indefensible" and an "affront to principles of constitutional democracy."