In addition to the lawsuits reported by The Daily Citizen in Pennsylvania and Michigan filed on the day after the election, the Trump campaign has now filed new suits in Georgia and Nevada, and additional cases in Pennsylvania. All four states could be critical to the ultimate determination of the next president. President Trump currently holds narrow leads in Georgia and Pennsylvania, while Vice President Joe Biden is hanging on by several thousand votes in Nevada. All three states anticipate that it will take several more days to finalize vote totals.
Here’s what we know about the state of play with regard to the election litigation in those states.
As we reported yesterday, a lawsuit was filed in Montgomery County challenging the practice of election officials there to “cure” defective mail-in ballots by contacting voters to “fix” them, a practice which Republicans allege is contrary to state law.
Today, similar lawsuits have been filed in Lancaster and Bucks counties by Republicans. In Bucks County, it is alleged the county sent 1,600 voters notices of a defective mail-in ballot in a procedure not allowed by state law. In Philadelphia, Republicans are seeking closer access to the ballot-counting process. A judge granted the request conditioned on 6-foot social distancing, but Trump attorneys are complaining that election officials allowed the access, but moved the vote-counting machines to the back of the room where they still cannot see what is going on.
The Trump campaign has also asked to intervene in an existing lawsuit challenging a Pennsylvania state court decision allowing mail-in ballots to be counted if received up to three days after Election Day. The state supreme court had exercised what it described as its emergency election authority to modify the otherwise clear state law requiring all mail-in ballots to be received by Election Day.
The Trump campaign is seeking to gain “meaningful access” to the ballot-counting process in Michigan, but has additionally added claims of “ballot counting misconduct” in a Detroit-area counting facility.
Additionally, there are claims being reported by Project Veritas of a post office official in Traverse City telling workers to backdate and postmark any late ballots received on November 4, to November 3, Election Day. That claim, if verified, could also end up in a lawsuit in Michigan.
In Georgia, the Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit alleging irregularities in vote-counting, including the sloppy handling of late-received ballots that weren’t segregated properly from valid ballots, and could be accidentally counted.
Today the Trump campaign will be filing a federal lawsuit in Nevada, claiming that the state is unlawfully counting approximately 10,000 votes received from people who were mailed ballots, who no longer live in the state or are deceased.
Commenting on the election-related litigation in these key battleground states, the Biden campaign has generally characterized these lawsuits as “meritless.” However, with the current margins of votes so close in these states, everyone has a vested interest in ensuring that all ballots counted are indeed valid.
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