Oath Keepers lawyers: Clients planned peaceful protests, asks judge to dismiss lawsuit

Former President Trump and Rudy Giuliani were also named in the suit.
U.S. Capitol Jan. 6
U.S. Capitol Jan. 6
(Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Lawyers representing the Oath Keepers, a group involved with the Jan. 6 riot at the Capital, say their clients were there only to peacefully protest the government and argue a lawsuit against them on the matter should be dismissed.

Oath Keeper members had the right "to exercise their right to peaceably assemble for the purpose of petitioning Congress for redress of grievances," the group's attorney, Kerry Lee Morgan, of Michigan, said in a court filing Wednesday, according to The Washington Post.

The suit was filed in February by Democratic Rep. Bernie Thompson and 10 other House members and argues rioters – incited by speakers at a rally before the riot – kept the congressional members from doing their official jobs counting Electoral College votes after Joe Biden's victory in the presidential election, according to NBC News.

The suit also names former President Trump, his former attorney Rudy Giuliani and the Proud Boys.

Oath Keepers in their response argued the Constitution and federal law do not specify what individual House members are to do when the electoral votes are counted. Therefore, the members had no formal role or official conduct that could be the target of interference, NBC also reports.

Oath Keeper attorneys also said the case should be dismissed because "there is no allegation their clients engaged in violence or entered the Capitol itself," NBC News also reports.