President Donald Trump’s legal filings in Pennsylvania ultimately revealed that there’s no allegation left that questions voter fraud.
In their latest case, “attorneys filed a revised version of the lawsuit, removing allegations that election officials violated the Trump campaign’s constitutional rights by limiting the ability of their observers to watch votes being counted,” said the Washington Post in a Sunday report.
It’s a move that the Post’s Philip Bump wrote is part of an effort that keeps making Trump look more and more like a loser.
The only way that Trump can hold onto power, outside of his miracle, is to change the outcome of three states.
“Even wresting away the three states in which Trump lost by the narrowest vote totals — Arizona, Georgia and Wisconsin — wouldn’t do the trick: That would get him only 37 electoral votes,” Bump wrote. “He would basically have to somehow finagle a win in Pennsylvania plus two of Arizona, Georgia and Wisconsin to get a second consecutive term in office. And it’s increasingly obvious that that’s not going to happen.”
Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani claimed that the assessment from the Post ignored the claim that over 600,000 voters voted illegally because Philadelphia looked inside the mail-in-ballots to see whether people had followed directions and put the ballot in the “inner” envelope, known as “naked ballots.” The Philadelphia City Commissioners said last week that they received only about 4,000 ballots lacking the secrecy envelope. Giuliani has never clarified where his 600,000 number came from, leading PolitiFact to give it a “pants on fire” rating.
In Arizona and Georgia Trump has little chance of overturning any results. Georgia is doing a hand-recount of the 5 million votes cast but it isn’t likely to change anything. Only a hand full of additional votes were found, hardly enough to help Trump overcome his 14,000-vote deficit.
In Arizona, Bump explained, “the state does not allow candidates to call for recounts, and recounts are done only if the results are within one-tenth of 1 percent. (As of writing, the margin between Trump and Biden is three times that.)”
After Tuesday, Trump can call for a recount in Wisconsin, but he’s got to pay for it first. While his campaign has been raising money for election lawsuits, the recount in the state also isn’t likely to change much and Trump could be using that money to retire his campaign debt.
“Remember,” said Bump, “Trump needs two of these states and Pennsylvania.”
Trump is also running low on legal help. After the election, there were a number of firms that lined up to help the Trump campaign. But over the past few weeks, that number looks more like five people. According to the Wall Street Journal, the Lincoln Project explained to the top law firms that have their names associated with Trump’s effort to overthrow the election probably isn’t the best PR move.
“In other words, Trump’s core legal team is now mostly made up of lawyers known more for their engagement with conservative media and public advocacy than for winning well-honed arguments challenging election results,” said Bump. “It’s a team of lawyers focused on bolstering Trump more than on overturning any election results. It’s less a legal dream team than it is a @realDonaldTrump Twitter list named ‘good lawyers.’”
Each lawsuit he brings presents another possibility of being laughed out of court and having his loss certified by judicial rulings that will remain in legal history forever.
“Again, Trump’s presidency will end on Jan. 20, and he has no obvious path toward derailing that inevitability,” Bump closed. “The question is whether he and his allies will admit that or whether they’ll spend the intervening weeks fostering doubt, amplifying unfounded conspiracy theories and flirting with simply trying to steal the presidency outright.”