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Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry is support a last ditch effort by Texas to keep Joseph R. Biden from being officially declared President of the United States.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry issued a statement supporting the State of Texas’ request that the U.S. Supreme Court overturn the electoral votes in four states that went to President-Elect Joseph R. Biden.

“As I have repeatedly said, only the Supreme Court can ultimately decide cases of real controversy among the states under our Constitution and that is why the justices should hear and decide this case,” Landry wrote Wednesday upon announcing Louisiana would join a friend of the court brief filed to support the Texas lawsuit.

“While some in the media and the political class try to sidestep legitimate issues for the sake of expediency, I will continue to pursue legal remedies to protect our State’s people from damage caused by other states counting unlawful votes or not counting lawful votes," Landry continued.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, a Republican, filed what is being described by some as a “Hail Mary” lawsuit asking the U.S. Supreme Court justices to use their “original jurisdiction” powers to issue an order preventing Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin from casting its electoral votes to Biden, who won the popular vote in each of those states. The high court rarely uses original jurisdiction to wade into issues not specifically litigated by lower courts.

State electors meet in six days, on Dec. 15, to cast their ballots in the Electoral College and officially name the next president.

Paxton argues that the four states improperly used the COVID-19 pandemic to flood the voting with absentee mail ballots that weakened security measures “protecting the integrity of the vote-signature verification and witness requirements.”

“Even without defendant states’ challenged actions here, the election nationwide saw a massive increase in fraud-prone voting by mail,” the lawsuit contends.

Landry joined 16 attorneys general, all Republican, on a friend of the court brief written by Missouri Attorney General Eric S. Schmitt and in support of the Texas complaint. 

"The states have a strong interest in preserving the proper roles of state legislatures in the administration of federal elections, and thus safeguarding the individual liberty of their citizens," Schmitt wrote.

Friend of the court brief arguing for the US Supreme Court to consider the Texas request to reject electoral votes for four states

Katie Byrd, a spokesperson for Georgia Attorney General Christopher Carr, who in January replaces Landry as chair the national Republican Attorneys’ General Association, told the Dallas Morning News that the Texas challenge “is constitutionally, legally and factually wrong about Georgia.”

“Indeed, the Georgia Attorney General got it right, and instead of continuing to sow doubt and distrust in the 2020 election, state AGs — regardless of party — should continue to speak out in support of the will of the people and protecting our democracy," said Attorneys General Maura Healey, of Massachusetts, and AG Aaron Ford, of Nevada. They are co-chairs of the Democratic Attorneys General Association.

Paxton’s legal action was filed hours before the Supreme Court on Tuesday, in a single sentence with no noted dissents, rejected Kelly v Pennsylvania, which had asked the high court to forbid Pennsylvania from certifying its 2020 election results because the state legislature's provision of no-excuse absentee voting violated both the Pennsylvania and U.S. Constitutions. The order was a major setback for President Donald Trump and his allies, who have lost about 50 legal challenges to the results of the Nov. 3 election because the scattershot allegations lacked any evidence.

Landry and his staff did not respond to requests for interviews Wednesday.

U.S. Rep. Mike Johnson, R-Bossier City, tweeted: “Today I made arrangements to file an amicus brief in the Texas case now pending at the Supreme Court on behalf of House Republicans who are all deeply concerned about the integrity of our election system...” He earlier tweeted, “Also today, my friend, Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, agreed to join our state as a party to the case in support of Texas. Stay tuned for big developments...”

Landry earlier had tied Louisiana to a friend of court brief, also written by Schmitt, that supported a challenge to Pennsylvania’s vote totals based on the argument that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court improperly overruled the state’s Republican majority General Assembly by allowing the counting of mail ballots postmarked on Election Day but arriving up to three days later. “Only the U.S. Supreme Court can ultimately decide cases of real controversy among the states under our Constitution. That is why the Justices should hear and decide the case which we have joined representing the citizens of Louisiana,” Landry said in his statement Tuesday night.

Louisiana’s junior U.S. senator, John N. Kennedy, R-Madisonville, sent out a mass email recently that questioned the election’s results, Louisiana Illuminator, a news website reported Tuesday. Kennedy claimed “a lot tomfoolery” went on during the election. “I’m not saying that something DID happen, but I’m not so sure something DIDN’T HAPPEN,” he wrote.

Republican U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, of Baton Rouge, tweeted on Nov. 23 that while he voted for Trump, Biden won. “President Trump’s legal team has not presented evidence of the massive fraud which would have had to be present to over the election.”

Email Mark Ballard at mballard@theadvocate.com.