On Monday, The Washington Post reported that aides to Vice President Mike Pence were suspicious that President Donald Trump might have been working behind the scenes with far-right "kraken" lawyer Sidney Powell to sue the vice president as part of a long-shot strategy to overturn the election results.
The rift grew when Trump's team tried to feed Pence legal arguments that he had the power to overturn the election — something he and most legal experts have rejected.
"Some of the arguments were spurious, officials said," reported Josh Dawsey and Ashley Parker. "One included the certification of the electoral college votes in 1801, when Vice President Thomas Jefferson ruled electors from Georgia as defective. Another was that Pence could disregard some states because they sent in multiple electoral ballots. When the vice president's team met with the parliamentarian, they learned that people sent fake electoral college, including one sender who signs them 'GeneralMagnifico,' a senior administration official said. The 1800 election had nothing to do with the current election, officials said."
"Pence was uncomfortable with the arguments, and asked his team to conduct its own analysis," said the report. "Marc Short, the vice president's chief of staff, began preparing for an inevitable rupture, a person who talked to him said, and never considered that Pence could please the president. Pence's team became convinced that Trump was behind a lawsuit against the vice president, and that it was also the work of Powell, two officials said."
Trump briefly considered installing Powell as a special counsel to investigate the election, something he doesn't have the authority to do. Powell has filed a series of spurious lawsuits to try to overturn the results of the election, including one in which she appeared to forget what state Detroit was in.
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