“This will continue to be a losing strategy, and in a way it’s even bad for him – he can lose the election again many times,” said Kent Greenfield, a professor at Boston College Law School. “The depth of his petulance and narcissism continues to amaze me.”
In an Associated Press count of approximately 50 cases brought by the Trump campaign and its allies, more than 30 have been rejected or dropped. About a dozen are waiting for action. Trump has achieved only one small victory, a case that challenges the decision to move the deadline to provide missing proof of identification for certain absentee ballots and mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania.
Another legal coup came Thursday, a day after Trump posted a 46-minute speech on Facebook filled with conspiracies, misstatements and promises to continue his fight to subvert the election.
In Wisconsin, a divided state Supreme Court refused to hear Trump’s lawsuit seeking to disqualify more than 221,000 ballots in the state’s two largest Democratic counties, citing irregularities in the way absentee ballots were administered. The case echoed claims that were previously rejected by election officials in those counties during a recount that barely affected Biden’s profit margin of roughly 20,700 votes. Trump filed a similar lawsuit in federal court Wednesday night.
Meanwhile, in Arizona, a judge heard arguments Thursday in a case challenging the election results presented by Arizona Republican Party Chair Kelli Ward. Ward’s attorneys say an inspection of 100 ballots found two problems: One person’s vote for Trump was ultimately recorded as a Biden vote, and someone else’s vote for Trump was canceled when the reproduced ballot contained votes for both the incumbent. Republican as for a written candidate.
State judges on the battlefield have repeatedly rejected the legal challenges presented by the president and his allies. Trump’s legal team has vowed to take a Pennsylvania case to the United States Supreme Court even though it was thrown out in a scathing ruling by a federal judge and an appeals court.
After being recently ousted from Trump’s legal team, conservative attorney Sidney Powell filed new lawsuits this week in Arizona and Wisconsin riddled with errors and insane conspiracies about electoral manipulation. One of the named plaintiffs in the Wisconsin case said he never agreed to participate in the case and learned through social media that he had been included. The same lawsuit requests 48 hours of security footage from the “TCF Center,” which is located in Detroit.
The issues raised by the Trump campaign and his allies are typical of every election: problems with signatures, secret envelopes and postmarks on vote-by-mail ballots, as well as the possibility that a small number of ballots may be lost or are incorrectly issued. Election officials from both parties have said the election went well, and Attorney General William Barr told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the Justice Department did not uncover any evidence of widespread voter fraud that could change the outcome of the election.
Trump’s lawyers responded by criticizing Barr, who has been one of the president’s greatest allies.
Greenfield says his criticisms say it all. “This shows just how vehement your ability to overlook reality is,” he said.
Trump and his allies failed to gain traction in court and now turn to events with Republican lawmakers and rallies in states such as Pennsylvania, Georgia and Michigan, where they can use unsubstantiated claims of fraud to incite the president’s loyal base.
At a rally in Georgia on Wednesday, Powell and another pro-Trump attorney, Lin Wood, suggested that Republican voters sit outside the two January runoff elections that will decide control of the Senate because of the potential for fraud. And in Michigan, Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney, urged Republican activists to pressure, even threaten, the GOP-controlled Legislature to award all 16 state electoral votes to Trump despite Biden’s victory. with 154,000 votes.
In his video released Wednesday, Trump said there were facts and evidence of a massive conspiracy created by Democrats to steal the election, a similar argument made by Giuliani and others before justices that has largely been unsuccessful. Most of their claims are based on conspiracy theories about voting machines that are not true, and affidavits from partisan election observers who claimed that they did not get close enough to see the ballot count due to security precautions in the coronavirus pandemic. Because they couldn’t see, they argued, something strange must have happened.
“No, I did not hear any facts or evidence,” Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, a Democrat, tweeted after viewing the video Wednesday night. “What I did hear was a sad spiel on Facebook from a man who lost an election.”