Texas Sen. Ted Cruz says he is available and willing to give the oral argument before the U.S. Supreme Court if the court agrees to hear an election lawsuit out of Pennsylvania challenging the constitutionality of lawmakers’ dramatic expansion of absentee voting.
Cruz, the longest-serving solicitor general in the history of Texas and a former law professor at the University of Texas Law School in Austin, was the first U.S. senator to publicly support the case, filed by Rep. Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania, 2020 U.S. congressional candidate Sean Parnell and former state representative candidate Wanda Logan.
“If #SCOTUS grants cert in the PA election case, I have told the petitioners I will stand ready to present the oral argument,” Cruz said on Twitter after first disclosing his intent on Fox News Channel. “Because of the importance of the legal issues presented, I’ve publicly urged #SCOTUS to hear the case brought by Congressman Mike Kelly, congressional candidate Sean Parnell & state rep. candidate Wanda Logan challenging the constitutionality of the POTUS election results in PA.”
Kelly’s appeal argues that Pennsylvania legislators last year passed legislation greatly expanding the use of absentee voting as pandemic fears raised worries about in-person processing of votes, making it a “no-excuse” mail-in election and contradicting the state’s constitution. It further derides the Pennsylvania Supreme Court for dismissing Kelly’s lawsuit for “laches,” a legal term for a procedural issue, i.e. saying the case was brought too late.
Cruz was especially critical of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s dismissal on the procedural ground.
“Even more persuasively, the plaintiffs point out that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has also held that plaintiffs don’t have standing to challenge an election law until after the election, meaning that the court effectively put them in a Catch-22: before the election, they lacked standing; after the election, they’ve delayed too long,” Cruz said. “The result of the court’s gamesmanship is that a facially unconstitutional election law can never be judicially challenged.
Cruz also on Monday filed a friend of the court brief – along with 10 of his Senate colleagues – in Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s case challenging the Democratic National Committee’s stance that the Voting Rights Act bans state laws limiting absentee voting. among other measures.