Trump Campaign Scraps a Big Claim in Pennsylvania Suit

It withdraws the allegation that 682K ballots were illegally processed
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 16, 2020 1:20 AM CST
Trump Campaign Scraps Big Part of Pennsylvania Suit
Supporters of President Donald Trump unfurl a giant American flag outside the Pennsylvania State Capitol, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, in Harrisburg, Pa., after Democrat Joe Biden defeated Trump to become 46th president of the United States.   (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

President Trump’s campaign on Sunday withdrew a central part of its lawsuit seeking to stop the certification of the election results in Pennsylvania, where Democrat Joe Biden beat Trump to capture the state and help win the White House. Ahead of a Tuesday hearing in the case, Trump’s campaign dropped the allegation that hundreds of thousands of mail-in and absentee ballots—682,479, to be precise—were illegally processed without its representatives watching, the AP reports. The campaign's slimmed-down lawsuit, filed in federal court on Sunday, maintains the aim of blocking Pennsylvania from certifying a victory for Biden in the state, and it maintains its claim that Democratic voters were treated more favorably than Republican voters. The remaining claim in the lawsuit centers on disqualifying ballots cast by voters who were given an opportunity to fix mail-in ballots that were going to be disqualified for a technicality.

The lawsuit charges that “Democratic-heavy counties” violated the law by identifying mail-in ballots before Election Day that had defects—such as lacking an inner “secrecy envelope” or lacking a voter’s signature on the outside envelope—so that the voter could fix it and ensure that their vote would count, called “curing.” Republican-heavy counties “followed the law and did not provide a notice and cure process, disenfranchising many,” the lawsuit said. Cliff Levine, a lawyer representing the Democratic Party in the case, tells the Washington Post only a "handful" of ballots were impacted, nothing close to the 70,000 votes that separate Trump and Biden. Plus, there is no provision in state law preventing counties from helping voters in that way. Levine said the lawsuit does not contain any allegation that somebody voted illegally. “They really should be suing the counties that didn’t allow (voters) to make corrections,” Levine says. “The goal should be making sure every vote counts.” (More Election 2020 stories.)

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