- THE EPOCH TIMES - Nov 8, 2020 - UPDATED Nov 16, 2020 -
On Nov. 3, Americans voted to elect their next leader. As of Nov. 15, most state results have not been certified and legal challenges and recounts are pending in key swing states. The Epoch Times will continue to update this article as new information becomes available on the status of the 2020 presidential election.
The Epoch Times will not declare a winner of the election until all results are certified and any legal challenges are resolved. Read more here.
Key Points on the Status of the Presidential Race:
· Legal challenges are ongoing in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Arizona.
· A recount has been requested in Wisconsin by the Trump campaign.
· A hand recount is ongoing in Georgia
Overview of Lawsuits and Recounts
Nov. 9, 2020: The Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania seeking an injunction that blocks the Keystone State from certifying the results of the 2020 General Election, alleging that state election officials had “mismanaged the election process” and that the counting process was “shrouded in secrecy.” Donald J. Trump For President, Inc. v. Boockvar (4:20-cv-02078)
Nov. 6, 2020: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito issued a temporary order in the Supreme Court case requiring Pennsylvania to segregate ballots that arrived after Election Day. The Trump campaign filed a motion on Nov. 4 to join the Supreme Court challenge to Pennsylvania’s deadline extension for late-arriving mail-in ballots. A petition for a writ of certiorari is currently being considered.
Nov. 5, 2020: The Trump campaign sued Philadelphia County’s Board of Elections to seek an emergency injunction to stop ballot counting in Philadelphia. Update: A federal judge denied the emergency request from the Trump campaign on Nov. 5.
Nov. 5, 2020: The Trump campaign sued the Montgomery County Board of Elections to stop counting mail-in ballots that do not comply with the election requirements. The campaign alleges that election officials were counting ballots in which the outer declaration envelope was not completely filled in with voters’ signature, address, and date. The campaign identified 600 ballots, at the time of the filing, that did not meet such requirements. This case is pending.
Nov. 4, 2020: The Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania to halt vote counting until Republican observers are granted adequate access. Update: A Pennsylvania appellate court on Nov. 5 ruled in favor of the Trump campaign, prompting election officials to appeal. The state Supreme Court said on Nov. 9 that it would hear the election officials’ appeal. This case is pending.
Nov. 4, 2020: The Trump campaign sued to compel Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Kathy Boockvar and 67 counties to follow an earlier deadline for voters to provide missing proof of identification if not provided on their initial ballot. Boockvar issued election guidance that extended the Nov. 9 deadline by three days, the lawsuit (pdf) states. A Pennsylvania judge on Nov. 5 ordered all counties to segregate ballots received between Nov. 10 and Nov. 12 for which missing identification was received from ballots verified on or before Nov. 9. Those segregated ballots cannot be counted until approved by the court. Update: On Nov. 12, the judge ordered the state to not count the segregated ballots, ruling that Boockvar “lacked statutory authority” to issue the guidance to change the deadline.
Nov. 16, 2020: The plaintiffs in Langenhorst v. Pecore voluntarily requested to dismiss the lawsuit and the judge terminated the case.
Nov. 13, 2020: A third-party lawsuit filed in Wisconsin is seeking to exclude election results in three of the state’s counties, alleging that “sufficient evidence that illegal votes were counted.” The lawsuit, filed by three voters, asks the court to invalidate and block the certification of the election results. This case is pending. Docket: Langenhorst v. Pecore (1:20-cv-01701)
Nov. 14, 2020: Lin Wood, an attorney with Trump’s reelection campaign sued Georgia’s Secretary of State and election officials in a bid to stop the certification of election results, claiming that election rules unconstitutionally changed by state officials could have invalidated absentee ballots cast in the 2020 election. Docket: Wood v. Raffensperger (1:20-cv-04651)
Nov. 13, 2020: The largest hand recount of ballots in U.S. history began in Georgia. The secretary of state’s office has instructed county election officials to complete the audit by 11:59 p.m. on Nov. 18. The deadline for the state to certify the results is Nov. 20. The Trump campaign is challenging the recount process because it does not include signature matching.
Nov. 6, 2020: Georgia’s secretary of state announced that the state will have a recount. Update: On Nov. 11, Georgia’s secretary of state announced the state would conduct a manual hand recount.
Nov. 4, 2020: The Trump campaign and the Georgia Republican Party filed a lawsuit in Georgia alleging that absentee ballots were improperly counted after the state’s deadline. Update: A judge in Georgia on Nov. 5 dismissed the lawsuit.
Nov. 13, 2020: The Republican Party of Arizona filed a lawsuit (pdf) against Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes and other state officials, seeking a hand count of votes by precinct, as opposed to by voting centers. Under the Secretary of State’s manual, election officials must perform a limited precinct hand count audit after every general election. For the 2020 election, Maricopa County set up “vote centers” across the county rather than assign voters to “polling places” in their precincts, as had been the traditional practice in prior elections. The difference in sampling vote centers compared to precincts is that there are significantly fewer vote centers. The state’s Republicans, hence, are asking for the sampling of precincts rather than vote centers for the hand count audit. This case is pending. Docket: Arizona Republican Party v Adrian Fontes et al (CV2020-014553)
Nov. 7, 2020: The Trump campaign and the RNC filed a lawsuit over rejected votes in Maricopa County. The lawsuit alleges in-person votes were disregarded as a result of improper guidance provided by poll workers. Update: On Nov. 13, the Trump campaign dropped its lawsuit, telling the court “tabulation of votes statewide has rendered unnecessary a judicial ruling as to the presidential electors.” (pdf)
Nov. 5, 2020: The Trump campaign and RNC asked an Arizona judge to let them join a lawsuit that alleges vote tabulation equipment in metro Phoenix was unable to record a voter’s ballot because she completed it with a county-issued Sharpie pen. Update: Attorneys who challenged the use of the markers told the court on Nov. 7 they’re dismissing their legal challenge.
Nov. 5, 2020: A third-party in Nevada filed a lawsuit that had several of its allegations promoted by the Trump campaign. The lawsuit seeks to change the signature verification procedures used for processing ballots. The plaintiffs include the congressional campaigns of two Nevada Republicans and a voter. Update: On Nov. 6, a federal judge denied a request for a preliminary injunction or a temporary restraining order to block the use of the signature verification machine. The case is active, but counting in Nevada will end soon. No other actions have been taken in the case since. Docket: Stokke v. Cegavske (2:20-cv-02046)
Oct. 29, 2020: A state judge rejected a lawsuit seeking expanded access to poll watchers, prompting the Trump campaign to appeal that decision to the state Supreme Court. This case was filed by the Trump campaign in October, seeking to immediately halt the ballot counting process until Trump campaign volunteers are allowed to closely observe the process. Update: On Nov. 10, the Trump campaign moved to dismiss their appeal after reaching a settlement with state officials to allow for more observers.
Nov. 10, 2020: The Trump campaign sued Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson and other officials in a federal court, alleging pervasive election irregularities and violations in Wayne County. The lawsuit is also seeking to determine the accuracy of tabulating equipment or software used in the state due to reports of malfunctioning software. This case is pending. Docket: Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. v. Benson (1:20-cv-01083)
Nov. 9, 2020: The Great Lakes Justice Center filed a lawsuit (pdf) in Wayne County Circuit Court alleging voter fraud in ballot-counting procedures. The suit alleges county election officials allowed various fraudulent processing of votes, including telling poll workers to backdate ballots and not verify signatures on absentee ballots. Several witnesses have filed sworn affidavits attesting to alleged election fraud. The plaintiffs, two poll challengers, are seeking a temporary restraining order on ballot counting. The judge in the case heard arguments on Nov. 11 over a motion asking the court to block the certification of election results, to order an audit, and for a protective order. Update: On Nov. 13, the judge denied the requests submitted in the plaintiffs’ motion. This case is pending. Docket: 20-014780-AW
Nov. 4, 2020: The Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in Michigan to halt vote counting until Republican observers are granted adequate access. A Michigan judge denied the request by the Trump campaign on Nov. 5, 2020. Update: The Trump campaign filed a motion on Nov. 6 asking the state’s court of appeals to review the case. The Michigan Court of Appeals sent a letter to the campaign on Nov. 9 asking for missing documents.
Overview of Probes into Alleged Election Irregularities
Voting Software: Michigan Republicans told Washington Examiner on Nov. 7 that they are expanding their investigation into Dominion after Antrim County found the software had erroneously tabulated 6,000 votes to Democratic nominee Joe Biden instead of President Donald Trump. The state’s party chairwoman Laura Cox said last week that 47 Michigan counties used software from Dominion in the same manner as Antrim County. Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson disputed some of the claims made by Republicans, attributing the problem to human error.
Election Irregularities: Michigan lawmakers are investigating allegations of election irregularities in the state. A GOP-led Joint Senate and House Committee met on Nov. 7 for an emergency session in which they voted to issue subpoenas to election officials requesting documents about the state’s election process.
Election review: Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) on Nov. 6 directed the Assembly Committee on Campaigns and Elections and its chair to “immediately review how the election was administered,” citing concerns of mail-in ballot dumps and voting fraud.
Allegations of Voter Fraud
Attorney General William Barr on Nov. 10 authorized the Justice Department to probe “substantial allegations” of “voting and vote tabulation irregularities prior to the certification of elections.”
In a lawsuit filed on Nov. 9, numerous witnesses filed sworn affidavits (pdf) that claimed instances of alleged voter fraud and misconduct. The suit alleges that poll workers were instructed to ignore signature mismatches, backdate ballots that arrived late, and push through ballots despite questions about their validity.
Backdating Mail-in Ballots
Jessy Jacob, a City of Detroit elections worker, attested that she was instructed to backdate mail ballots and not to look for any deficiencies with the ballots. She also claimed she was told not to ask for identification when voters arrived to vote in person.
“On November 4, 2020, I was instructed to improperly pre-date the absentee ballots receive date that were not in the [Qualified Voter File (QVF)] as if they had been received on or before November 3, 2020. I was told to alter the information in the QVF to falsely show that the absentee ballots had been received in time to be valid. I estimate that this was done to thousands of ballots,” Jacob stated in her affidavit.
Jacob also alleged that she witnessed election workers coaching or encouraging voters to vote favorably for Democratic nominee Joe Biden and the Democratic Party.
“I directly observed, on a daily basis, City of Detroit election workers and employees coaching and trying to coach voters to vote for Joe Biden and the Democrat party. I witnessed these workers and employees encouraging voters to do a straight Democrat ballot. I witnessed these election workers and employees going over to the voting booths with voters in order to watch them vote and coach them for whom to vote,” she attested.
Thousands of Ballots Arriving After Election Deadline
Poll challenger Andrew Sitto said in his affidavit that he witnessed tens of thousands of unsealed, unsecured ballots arriving in vehicles with out-of-state license plates in Michigan’s Wayne County at 4:30 a.m. on the morning after Election Day.
“At approximately 4:30 a.m., tens of thousands of ballots were brought in and placed on eight long tables. Unlike the other ballots, these boxes were brought in from the rear of the room,” Sitto said. “The same procedure was performed on the ballots that arrived at approximately 4:30 a.m., but I specifically noticed that every ballot I observed was cast for Joe Biden.”
“While counting these new ballots, I heard counters say at least five or six times that all five or six ballots were for Joe Biden. All ballots sampled that I heard and observed were for Joe Biden,” he added.
Sitto said the election official subsequently blocked the windows of the room he was in with cardboard and refused to let him reenter after he left for a break.
Counting Ballots from “unknown, unverified persons”
Poll challenger Robert Cushman said in his sworn affidavit that he witnessed an estimated several thousand ballots that arrived in boxes for which names did not appear on either the qualified voter file (QVF) or the supplemental lists for voters who had registered shortly before Election Day.
“I saw the computer operators at several counting boards manually adding the names and addresses of these thousands of ballots to the QVF system,” Cushman stated. “When I asked what the possible justification was to counting ballots from unknown, unverified ‘persons,’ I was told by election supervisors that the Wayne County Clerk’s Office had ‘checked them out.’”
He challenged the process of counting those votes and noted that the poll workers entered the birthdays for each of the purported voters as 1/1/1900.
“When I asked about this impossibility of each ballot having the same birthday occurring in 1900, I was told that was the instruction that came down from the Wayne County Clerk’s office,” Cushman said. “I was surprised and disappointed at the preponderance of dishonesty, irregularities, and fraudulent tactics at the November 3, 2020 election at the TCF Center.”
The Epoch Times is seeking comment from the clerks of Wayne County and Detroit city. David Fink, lead counsel for the city of Detroit, said in a statement to The Epoch Times that the lawsuit raises “baseless allegations, trying to undermine confidence in a well-run election.”
The Nevada Republican Party announced that its lawyers have sent Barr a criminal referral alleging at least 3,062 cases of voter fraud in the state. The party alleged that after cross-referencing more than 60 pages of voter records with the National Change of Address database they found at least “3,062 individuals who appear to have improperly cast mail ballots in the election.”