Half Past the Month

October 14, 2021

The Jan. 6 Record Set Straight(er)

WE OWE to the Claremont Institute some insight into the unholy mess that was Jan. 6, 2021, and the fateful decision of the Vice President to certify the election of Joe Biden as President. It is not what we have been told.

The narrative to date is that the Vice President had little choice when presiding over the Joint Session of Congress. It says that he either had to certify the electors or single-handedly overturn the will of the people. The Vice President has said his decision was the only “American” thing to do.

But Claremont Senior Fellow John Eastman, acting as counsel to the President of the United States during the 2020 elections in December 2020 and January 2021, disagrees. Two days earlier he had offered a more measured option. 

Eastman says the Vice President was not asked to “overturn” the election. Rather, he was advised to consider requests from state legislators to pause the proceedings for a week to give time to the state legislatures “to assess whether the acknowledged illegal conduct by their state election officials had affected the results of the election.” If the state legislatures had found sufficient illegal conduct to have altered the results, and as a result submitted a second slate of electors, he advised the Vice President that he should regard Congress and not the office of the Vice President as having the authority to choose between the two slates.

“The scenario I recommended to the Vice President was that he accede to requests from numerous state legislators, including the President Pro Tempore of the Pennsylvania Senate, to delay the proceedings long enough for the legislatures in the contested states to assess the impact of acknowledged illegality in the conduct of the election,” says Eastman. “Indeed, I explicitly stated to the Vice President during an Oval Office meeting on Jan. 4 that even assuming he had constitutional authority to reject contested electoral votes, it would be ‘foolish’ to exercise any such authority in the absence of the state legislatures actually having certified the alternate Trump slate of electors.”

Similarly, the Jan. 6 riot at the Capital continues to be described as an “armed insurrection” although we now know that only five persons of the thousands present were found to have a firearm, some of them away from the scene or only after rioters had dispersed, and one of them a DEA agent. Compare that with what you would find in a sweep of West 29th Street in Indy on any Saturday night.

And the Secretary of Homeland Security says our southern border is “closed,” Jen Psaki describes the evacuation of Kabul “a success” and in Chicago shootouts are not prosecuted if they are a matter of “mutual combat.”

It once took years or even decades before history could be twisted into the desired shape. Today with a complicit media it can be done on the fly and in real time.

And that, lest we be confused by the Washington fog machine, is called lying. — tcl


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