Pro-Trump lawyer John Eastman goes down in flames trying to defend his infamous 'coup memo'
CBS Denver/screen grab

Pro-Trump lawyer John Eastman is being shunned even by some of his fellow conservatives at the Federalist Society after he wrote an infamous memo outlining how Vice President Mike Pence could refuse to certify the results of the 2020 election.

As the Washington Post's Aaron Blake notes, Eastman this week tried to do damage control over the memo by conducting an interview with the conservative National Review, but interviewer John McCormack didn't let him get away with misrepresenting the facts about the contents of his original memo.

For example, Eastman tried to claim that he only described Pence as the "ultimate arbiter" over the electoral college vote count in a preliminary memo, even though McCormack hastened to point out that this description was used in the more comprehensive six-page memo Eastman wrote outlining multiple options for contesting the election.

The bottom line, argues the Post's Blake, is that Eastman now seems to be clumsily trying to whitewash his efforts to get Pence to reject the certified election results and send the results back to states with Republican-run state legislatures.

"The idea... was to get Pence to do something extraordinary with no historical precedent and of highly questionable legality to pave the way for overturning an American election," writes Blake. "Whether that meant getting Pence to try to overturn the election himself or to get him to pretend there was enough suspicion of certain states' results to delay the process and try to get partisan politicians to do the dirty work, the goal was clearly the same."

All of this leaves Blake to conclude that "Eastman still doesn't have a good explanation for his increasingly infamous role in American history."