Democratic Joe Biden inched closer to the majority 270-mark in the US elections. Biden currently has 253 electoral votes, and President Trump, 213. There are 20 electoral votes at stake in Pennsylvania and President Trump cannot be reelected if he doesn’t win there, no matter how many other states he wins.
In yet another setback to Donald Trump, US courts dismissed his campaign’s lawsuits in Michigan and Georgia related to electoral malpractice.
In Michigan, the campaign had sought to stop the counting of absentee ballots, while in Georgia it had alleged that even improper ballots were being counted.
Michigan Court of Claims Judge Cynthia Stephens on Thursday (October 5) rejected the lawsuit, arguing that the Michigan secretary of state is not involved with the local counting process. A formal order would be issued.
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Multiple news networks have declared Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden winner in Michigan.
The relief that is being requested in substantial part is completely unavailable through the secretary of state, Stephens said during the oral hearing.
“Additionally, even if this relief were available, as opposed to when this suit was announced yesterday morning and the count was beginning, it was filed at 4 o’clock, at which point the count had largely proceeded, I am told,” she said.
In Georgia, Judge James F Bass dismissed the lawsuit. “I’m denying the request and dismissing the petition,” Bass said.
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The Trump campaign has also filed lawsuits in Pennsylvania and Nevada. It has demanded recounting of votes in Wisconsin.
Bob Bauer, a senior adviser to Biden’s campaign, called the various Trump lawsuits a “meritless” distraction and said the strategy was designed to undermine the integrity of the electoral process.
“This is part of a broader misinformation campaign that involves some political theater,” he said.
“They’re intended to give the Trump campaign the opportunity to argue the vote count should stop. It is not going to stop,” he told media on Thursday.
In Pennsylvania, where Trump is narrowly leading but Biden is gaining, the Trump campaign and other Republicans have already filed various legal challenges.
An appeals court in Pennsylvania on Thursday ordered that Trump campaign officials be allowed to more closely observe ballot processing in Philadelphia, which led to a brief delay in the count.
A judge later in the day helped negotiate an agreement that a fixed number of observers from each campaign – up to 60 – could be admitted into parts of the city’s ballot-counting area inside the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
Pennsylvania Democrats filed papers on Thursday in the US Supreme Court saying that although they would not oppose the Trump campaign’s bid to intervene in a pending appeal in which Republicans seek to block late-arriving mail-in ballots in the state, it was premature for the court to act on the motion.
Trump has repeatedly said that he expects the Supreme Court, which has a 6-3 conservative majority including three justices he appointed, to have a key role in determining the outcome.
“We think there’s going to be a lot of litigation,” Trump told media on Thursday, adding that “it’s going to end up perhaps in the highest court in the land.”