(COLUMBUS, Ohio) — Attorney General Dave Yost today filed an amicus brief urging the United States Supreme Court to accept the case of Texas vs. Pennsylvania and rule on the Constitution’s Electors Clause.
The Electors Clause says that state legislatures—not the executive or judicial branches—set the rules for selecting electors for the Electoral College, which chooses the president. In several states, executives or judges changed rules on the eve of the election.
“Free and fair elections start with clear rules that don’t change right before the election,” Yost said in today’s brief. “It is not unreasonable to wonder—and many millions of Americans do—whether those hastily implemented changes exposed the election systems to vulnerabilities.”
“If there is anything more American than representative government, it is a firm conviction that the rules ought not be changed after the game has begun.”
Yost expressed skepticism about Texas’s proposed remedy, which asks the Court to order the legislatures in the defendant states to appoint a new set of electors for the Electoral College, and believes the time has come for the Court to make a definitive decision on how the Electors Clause should be interpreted. Yost filed a brief last month making similar arguments about the role of the courts in the election process, in Republican Party of Pennsylvania v. Boockvar.
“Federal courts, just like state courts, lack authority to change the legislatively chosen method for appointing presidential electors,” he said. “And so federal courts, just like state courts, lack authority to order legislatures to appoint electors without regard to the results of an already-completed election.”
Yost noted that Ohio had a clean, fair and accurate election, despite numerous lawsuits.
“As Attorney General, I have successfully defended Ohio’s laws governing elections, and Ohio did not experience the chaos and uncertainty that other States did,” he said. “I will continue to stand for the rule of law and with the people, their right to vote, and to have their vote counted.”