Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Trump wants Michigan to stop counting ballots, threatens lawsuit to do so

Posted By on Wed, Nov 4, 2020 at 3:26 PM

  • Evan El-Amin /

The campaign of President Donald Trump — who spent Tuesday night and much of Wednesday spewing misinformation about election results, preemptively declaring victory, accusing Democrats of stealing the election long before states reported final counts, and falsely claiming Michigan mysteriously “found” ballots that favor opponent Joe Biden — said it will file a lawsuit in Michigan's Court of Claims in hopes of halting the ballot counting process.

The Trump campaign is alleging it has not been granted “meaningful access” to “numerous” counting locations, The Detroit News reports. However, poll workers at Detroit's TCF Center, which has been converted into an absentee ballot processing facility, say they have allowed many Republican "poll challengers" to enter and observe.

The suit follows the latest election results, which put Biden ahead in Michigan by 45,000 votes, with 95% of precincts reporting. Michigan is one of several battleground states that have yet to complete counting ballots, including Pennsylvania and North Carolina.

“As votes in Michigan continue to be counted, the presidential race in the state remains extremely tight as we always knew it would be,” Trump 2020 campaign manager Bill Stepien said in a statement, adding that the campaign will demand a review of those ballots that had been opened and counted while they were allegedly denied access.

According to WXYZ, however, a spokesperson for the Michigan Court of Claims suggests that a lawsuit has yet to be filed.

“Right now, we’re focused on counting every ballot in the state of Michigan, got secure protocols in place to tabulate those votes. That’s our focus. We stand by the process,” Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said during a press conference Wednesday in response to lawsuits. “As an election law attorney myself, we’re very familiar with the process and legality of our process. This story for us is about making sure at this point every valid ballot is counted.”

The suit was announced just moments before Biden was declared the winner in Wisconsin by a 20,000 vote margin Wednesday afternoon. Trump, who won in Wisconsin in 2016 by an equally slim 23,000 votes, threatened recount efforts before Biden's narrow victory had been announced, citing alleged irregularities in several Wisconsin counties.

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