Trump team makes political case for long-shot legal fight

There’s a reason for that.

As with everything Trump has to offer, in the view of Republicans familiar with the scheme, the messaging served as a fundamental political game rather than an attempt to present a logical legal argument to the country. The aim is not only to undermine the legitimacy of Joe Biden’s victory, but also to attract supporters to the tie-off in Georgia that will determine which party controls the Senate next year. It also serves to sow doubts about the integrity of the US election now and in the future, which benefits Trump’s I-never-lose stance.

It’s a tactic that seems to work – at least when it comes to delegitimizing the election results. According to a new report, 70 percent of Republicans already believe the elections were not free and fair POLITICO / Morning Consult survey released on Tuesday. This is a huge increase from the 35 percent who had similar beliefs before the election.

“It’s all noise,” said a former Trump adviser who remains close to the campaign.

Legally, the Trump team hasn’t made much, if any, progress. Since the November 3 election, presidential attorneys have not won any significant legal challenges in the major swing states where Biden has won or leads: Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Georgia, and Nevada. In some cases, Trump’s team failed to provide the evidence needed to invalidate ballot papers. In other cases, his team didn’t even send in the correct documents.

In Michigan, the Trump campaign failed to submit the full filing, including the lower court order, required to appeal to the Michigan Court of Appeals.

Ned Foley, director of electoral law at Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law, said the Trump campaign’s efforts were far from “conventional legal strategy.”

“You’re only suing to complain,” said Foley. “It doesn’t seem like a strategy aimed at winning in court.”

Even if the lawsuits had been more successful up to that point, in most cases only dozens or hundreds of ballot papers were questioned – not the thousands or tens of thousands it would take to change the election results. In Arizona, for example, a Trump campaign lawsuit alleged that election officials were “wrongly rejected”. fewer than 200 ballot papers.

“It doesn’t look like we’re seeing anything that should or will affect the number of votes,” said Jason Snead, executive director of the conservative Honest Elections Project. “After all, it’s still a numbers game.”

Snead, who argued allegations of fraud and changes to state voting needs to be investigated, said the campaign had weeks to do so.

The Trump campaign signaled on Monday that it may change direction – from challenging ballot papers to taking over a state’s entire results. In Pennsylvania the campaign filed his first federal lawsuit aimed at blocking the certification of a state’s entire election. In this case, Trump’s attorneys argued that certification cannot take place until mail-in and absentee votes have been verified through an unspecified process.

The lawsuit complains of various practices, including decisions by some districts to allow voters to “cure” mail-in ballots that have been rejected on technical grounds. They also alleged that some voters received ballots they had not requested, that other voters were told that their ballots had already been mailed and that the ballots had been thrown away.

However, the lawsuit does not claim that there were enough examples of any of those examples to overcome the more than 45,000 vote lead that Biden currently enjoys on the Pennsylvania record.

The tactic continued Tuesday night when Trump’s campaign in Michigan filed a similar lawsuit, asking a federal court to prevent the state from confirming its findings until the campaign could verify that tables were being conducted legally. Trump’s attorneys cited a number of alleged irregularities, many of which were reported by individual voters, including ballot papers cast in the names of the dead.

The campaign also said election workers treated Republican election observers unfairly, applauding when observers left the vote counting sites and used derogatory language to them. These actions, the campaign said, constituted “illegal intimidation” that prevented observers from observing other irregularities.

Regardless of this, legal experts do not see that the individual lawsuits add up too much.

“If they had viable legal claims that affected thousands of votes in one fell swoop, they would pursue them,” said Richard Pildes, an electoral law expert who teaches at New York University School of Law. “Without that, they may be hoping that a series of small wins, if they have any, will eventually lead to something significant.”

The former aide said the campaign missed a crucial opportunity early on to come up with a coherent legal argument that could resonate across the country. The election campaign, he said, should have simply argued from the start that governors who changed the rules for state elections due to the pandemic had exceeded their authority.

“Your message becomes more difficult as you move around,” said the person.

Without a clear, legally-based message, the Trump team has agreed on a large-scale political message.

While trapped in the White House for the second day in a row on Tuesday, Trump continued his all-encompassing deluge of electoral fraud accusations on Twitter he earns more labels from Twitter to assert controversial claims.

“We’ll win,” he tweeted at one point.

Before the election, the Republicans had touted them Preparatory work They wanted to dispute ballots after November 3rd. They boasted having recruited thousands of volunteer attorneys and hired dozens of attorneys from three major law firms: Consovoy McCarthy, who defended Trump to prevent Congressional attorneys and New York City’s attorneys from getting his funds on record; Jones Day, who has raised millions from the Trump campaign since before the 2016 election; and King and Spalding, who once employed FBI director Christopher Wray.

But at press conferences in battlefield states to discuss their post-election legal efforts, the campaign has dispatched figures like former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer. Activists David Bossie and Corey Lewandowski and former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.

In Nevada, Ric Grenell, an RNC official and former ambassador to Germany, accused state election officials of covering up election fraud. But when asked for evidence by reporters, he refused to give or even give any name. “You are here to take in information” and “do your job,” he told them.

Your public messages are becoming increasingly important in political circles.

In Pennsylvania, a House committee announced plans to hold election hearings. This was the first step in completely bypassing the Republican legislature’s vote and designating its own electoral roll. Elsewhere, Republican lawmakers in Tennessee and Georgia signed letters defending Trump’s legal prosecution. Also in Georgia, the two Republican US Senators called on the GOP Foreign Minister to resign – According to reports Appease Trump.

Yet even some in Trump’s inner circle have begun to express public doubts.

Jay Sekulow, an attorney and radio host who represented Trump during his impeachment trial, sounded pessimistic during his broadcast on Tuesday as he discussed the legal challenges.

“This is a Herculean task,” he said. “There is a lot to overcome. I want everyone to be realistic. You have to shut that down because this is a constitutional obligation. “

In the White House, some aides still believe a second term is possible while others have come to terms with the loss. This schism is currently dividing administrative staff, and a White House adviser says, “We remain in this limbo.”

Trump officials say more legal challenges are to be expected.

Senior Adviser to the Trump Campaign, Jason Miller argued Monday on Fox News that the campaign has enough evidence to change the outcome in Pennsylvania and that it expects more legal action in Michigan and Wisconsin, both states carried out Biden.

The campaign could also appeal a decision in North Carolina to allow late-arriving postal ballots that were postmarked by election day. Trump is leading in this state, however, and his campaign has shown no sign of questioning the state’s results.

The Trump campaign and the Republican National Committee did not respond to a request for comment. In a conference call with reporters Tuesday to discuss the new suit in Michigan, Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh expressed confidence the lawsuits would mark an important step towards an ultimate Trump victory. But he admitted, “We’re not going to eat the apple in one bite.”

Meanwhile, pro-Trump internet numbers have started crowdsourcing research.

Ali Alexander, a MAGA influencer and former Tea Party political agent, started a Google Doc asking followers to find examples of people voting in two different states, one with a maiden name and another were registered under a current name.

“The same technique can affect adopters, divorced people, people who have changed their names, and / or transgender people,” reads the document that helped fuel a hashtag: #Maidengate.

Matthew Choi, Nancy Cook, Josh Gerstein, Tina Nguyen, Zach Montellaro, and Daniel Lippman contributed to this report.

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