AUSTIN – Today, a U.S. District Court issued its final judgment in Texas v. Garland, which was a challenge to the U.S. House’s proxy voting rule under the Quorum Clause of the Constitution. In its final judgment, the Court concluded that U.S. House members must be physically present for their vote to comply with the Constitution’s Quorum Clause. Attorneys from the Texas Public Policy Foundation argued the merits at trial in January of this year. 

The lawsuit was originally filed with the State of Texas in response to Congress’ unlawful passage of the $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill in December 2022. The U.S. Constitution requires a quorum, or a majority, of House members to be physically present for the U.S. House of Representatives to conduct business. As less than half of the members were present when the legislation was passed, with the rest voting by proxy, this legislation never should have passed, and the president should not have signed it. 

“This meticulous, 120-page opinion was written after a full trial on the merits,” said TPPF senior attorney Matt Miller. “The Court correctly concluded that the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 violated the Quorum Clause of the U.S. Constitution because a majority of House members was not physically present when the $1.7 trillion spending bill was passed. Proxy voting is unconstitutional.” 

“Congress acted egregiously by passing the largest spending bill in U.S. history with fewer than half the members of the House bothering to do their jobs, show up, and vote in person,” said Attorney General Paxton. “Former Speaker Nancy Pelosi abused proxy voting under the pretext of COVID-19 to pass this law, then Biden signed it, knowing they violated the Constitution. This was a stunning violation of the rule of law. I am relieved the Court upheld the Constitution.”

To read the text of the final judgment, click here.


Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit free-market research institute based in Austin that aims to foster human flourishing by protecting and promoting liberty, opportunity, and personal responsibility. The Center for the American Future defends the Constitution through legal opposition to government overreach. The Center launches legal challenges at the administrative, district, and appellate court levels on behalf of ordinary people whose lives, liberty, and property are threatened by government action in defiance of the Constitution.