The Failed Texas Lawsuit Challenging 2020 Election Results

A failed legal challenge led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton attempted to overturn the 2020 election results by invalidating results from battleground states won by President Joe Biden. American Oversight is seeking communications about the case between the Department of Justice and the various attorneys general of states that joined the suit, including Florida, Missouri, and others.

Former President Donald Trump and his allies made numerous dubious legal challenges to the 2020 election results after his loss. One of those challenges came from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who sued four key battleground states that went for President Joe Biden — Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin — in a bid to stop their electoral college votes from being counted, contending without evidence that pandemic-related changes to election procedures amounted to widespread fraud. 

The suit was thrown out by the Supreme Court within days, but not before it drew support from at least 125 Republican members of the House of Representatives, Trump himself, and the attorneys general of 17 other states

American Oversight filed open records requests in Texas and several other states that joined the suit to provide more information about this authoritarian effort to thwart democracy. 

In Texas, we requested records of email communications and text messages between Paxton or his top aides and Texas senators or other state attorneys general. American Oversight also requested communications or meetings Paxton’s office had with top Department of Justice officials in the weeks leading up to the lawsuit. 

We are also seeking records of communications among the state attorneys general who supported the suit, including those in Florida, Missouri, West Virginia, and Oklahoma, as well as their communications with Justice Department leadership.

Updates

From Voter-Fraud Myths to Bogus Election Audits: The Evolution of the Big Lie

September 13, 2021
On Monday, American Oversight published an in-depth look at the "Big Lie" and the decades-long campaign by conservative activists and lawmakers to hype up the threat of voter fraud.

American Oversight Sues Justice Department for Records of Efforts to Overturn Election

April 20, 2021
The lawsuit seeks details about the attempt to install a Trump loyalist as acting attorney general during the final days of the Trump administration.

News Roundup: The Big Lie Becomes Big Policy

March 25, 2021
The sheer number of voting-restriction bills currently floating in state legislatures makes it hard to keep track of where each proposal stands. But they all point to the fact that conservative leaders and fundraisers have increasingly adopted such restrictions as a primary policy position.

News Roundup: Trump’s Second Impeachment

February 11, 2021
Videos prepared by House impeachment managers reminded both lawmakers and the public of the consequences of the former president’s lies and provocations.

Investigations Update: West Virginia Lawmaker’s Involvement in Capitol Attack and Trump’s Attempts to Overturn Georgia Election Results

January 19, 2021
See the latest in our investigations of the security at the U.S. Capitol, DOJ’s opioid settlement with Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family, and the “burrowing in” of Trump political appointees.
Show all updates

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