Supreme Court Unanimously Denies Texas Emergency Relief, Refuses to Grant Motion for Leave to File (Updated)
This evening, in Texas v. Pennsylvania, a unanimous Supreme Court refused to grant Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton an injunction or other relief that would bar the selection of presidential electors in Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. As detailed in the just-released order, seven justices would deny the Texas AG’s Motion for Leave to file a complaint, citing a lack of Article III standing. Justices Alito and Thomas, citing their long-standing belief that the Court lacks the discretion to deny the motion, would have granted the motion, but would have provided Texas with no other relief. In other words, not a single justice believed Texas deserved the extraordinary relief it sought.
The Court’s order reads:
The State of Texas’s motion for leave to file a bill of complaint is denied for lack of standing under Article III of the Constitution. Texas has not demonstrated a judicially cognizable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections. All other pending motions are dismissed as moot.
Statement of Justice Alito, with whom Justice Thomas joins: In my view, we do not have discretion to deny the filing of a bill of complaint in a case that falls within our original jurisdiction. See Arizona v. California, 589 U. S. ___ (Feb. 24, 2020) (Thomas, J., dissenting). I would therefore grant the motion to file the bill of complaint but would not grant other relief, and I express no view on any other issue.
This puts an end to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s effort to upend the results of the November election. It should also put an end to the efforts by the Trump campaign and its allies to delegitimize or otherwise challenge the election results.
This result was not a surprise. As I indicated in my prior posts on AG Paxton’s initial filing, the intervening briefs, amici, state defendants’ responses, and Paxton’s feeble replies, this case never had merit. As the Court concluded, Texa
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