In December, John Eastman represented Trump before the U.S. Supreme Court when few others—even longtime Trump attorneys—would do so. On the then-president’s behalf, Eastman—a Chapman University law professor who became an outrage-magnet during the 2020 election for openly questioning Sen. Kamala Harris’s citizenship and therefore eligibility to serve as Biden’s running mate—asked the Supreme Court to allow Trump to intervene in a Texas suit that sought to cancel Biden’s victory in four key states.
This legal maneuver, predictably, went nowhere fast. For his time and service, Eastman was rewarded by Trump by having his name floated as a possible member of his legal team for the second Senate trial. Eastman also got a prime speaking slot at the D.C. rally that preceded the bloody riot on Capitol Hill. However, Eastman and Giuliani were soon barred from working on the team, with several top Trump advisers fearing the pair wasn’t serious enough and that they carried too much riot-related baggage with them.
The week after the rioting, Eastman was forced to resign from Chapman, following mounting pressure on the university’s leadership. The separation was acrimonious enough that both Eastman and the university had to pledge not to sue one another. “Chapman and Dr. Eastman have agreed not to engage in legal actions of any kind, including any claim of defamation that may currently exist, as both parties move forward,” Chapman president Daniele Struppa said in a statement at the time.