Posts tagged with "Presidential election"

Trump orders advisers to ‘go down fighting’

November 6, 2020

As Election Day turns into election week, Donald Trump has delivered a simple message to his closest political and legal advisers as they began charting a plan to challenge results in several key states: Give them a court fight that “they’ll never forget.”

The president’s remarks, relayed by two people familiar with them, came as election results seemed trending Joe Biden’s way. And for Team Trump, it was meant as a clarion call to use every possible legal resource and bit of political organizing to help re-tip the balance of the scale, The Daily Beast reported.

Trump told his advisers that, even if Biden were to claw the presidency away from him, he wanted them to “go down fighting” harder than they ever had before, one of the sources with direct knowledge said.

Goaded by White House messaging, his base responded:

The Michigan Republican Party did not return a request for comment from The Daily Beast.

Trump’s legal team—including George W. Bush campaign veteran Mark “Thor” Hearne—asked a court in Michigan to halt absentee ballot counts because it alleged its observers had not been granted full access to the tally, and were not permitted to watch video footage of “remote and unattended dropboxes.”

It brought a similar suit in Pennsylvania, fighting to stop the tabulation on the grounds that its overseers had not been allowed within 25 feet of the counting effort.

Further, Trump’s lawyers filed to enter an ongoing Supreme Court case, hoping to convince jurists on the highest bench to overturn a state policy that would allow counties to count votes postmarked on Election Day and received as late as Friday. Jay Sekulow, a personal attorney and confidant of Trump’s, is overseeing the Supreme Court effort.

“Lawyer city,” Joe Grogan, formerly a top domestic policy adviser to President Trump, said, describing the situation on Wednesday afternoon. “It’s going to be really ugly.”

Research contact: @thedailybeast

Pennsylvania Republicans mobilize for an election nightmare scenario

October 2, 2020

Whether he wins or loses the presidential election, Donald Trump will be able to declare victory in Pennsylvania, if Republican state legislators have their way.

In fact, GOP representatives are planning to challenge the outcome of Pennsylvania’s presidential election, if Trump fails to garner sufficient votes, The Huffington Post reports.

On Wednesday, September 28, Republicans in the state’s House of Representatives passed a resolution (House Resolution 1032) out of the chamber’s Government Committee on a 15-10 party-line vote to create a special “election integrity committee” of three Republicans and two Democrats to investigate the 2020 election. It could possibly certify its own slate of electors for Trump based on phony charges of voter fraud.

In a statement released right after the vote, Keystone State Governor Tom Wolf  (D) argued, “The House Republicans are not only walking in lockstep with President Trump to try to sow chaos and put the results of the election in question; they are also taking steps to take the authority to administer elections away from the Department of State. The resolution also attacks the integrity of county election administrators. This is an unprecedented attack on non-partisan election administrators at a time when we should all be doing everything we can to instill confidence in our elections.”

“The push to create this new election committee came “out of nowhere,” Pennsylvania House Democratic Leader Frank Dermody told the HuffPost.

“We heard the president say last night, ‘Bad things happen in Philadelphia,’” State Representative  Malcolm Kenyatta (D) said, referencing Tuesday night’s presidential debate between Trump and his Democratic opponent Joe Biden, at the hearing on the resolution. “The reality is, bad things are happening in this committee. This is a bad bill that never should have been brought up.”

Republicans, led by Trump, have been laying the groundwork for this type of move for weeks through lawsuits to limit ballot-counting, claims of potential mass fraud, and more. The Atlantic reported that Pennsylvania Republicans discussed a plan with Trump’s campaign whereby the Republican-controlled legislature would use accusations of voter fraud in order to discard the popular vote as too tainted to count. They could then, theoretically, certify Trump’s slate of electors and send them to Congress for the official Electoral College count on Jan. 6.

Since Governor Wolf would likely certify electors for Biden if he wins the popular vote that the legislature discards, Congress would then be forced to vote on which slate to adopt.

“I’ve mentioned it to [the Trump campaign], and I hope they’re thinking about it too,” Lawrence Tabas, the Pennsylvania Republican Party’s chairman, told the HuffPost about the plan to certify Trump electors.

If the Electoral College vote is close, this scheme could help Trump “win” a second term.

“We wake up and they have this resolution,” House Democratic Leader Dermody said. “It came out of nowhere. My guess is they wanted to have a companion operation going along with their plan to try and fix the Electoral College.”

Research contact: @HuffPost