Don’t ‘STOP THE COUNT’
President Donald Trump tweeted on Thursday morning that election officials should stop counting votes—and his campaign’s legal team is firing off a flurry of lawsuits in an attempt to at least slow the democratic process down.
But Trump’s “STOP THE COUNT” tweet is a good reminder of how purely political—and a bit silly— all this has become. The president doesn’t control the election process; each state does. And there has been no indication of voter fraud or election malfeasance that could somehow swing the election. Trump’s behavior is nothing more than an attempt to stop the legitimate democratic process from fully playing out (and an inconsistent attempt at that, given that Trump supporters have been cheering for additional vote-counting in Arizona, where the president is hoping to make a late comeback).
But as the election drags on, Trump seems determined to push the result into overtime. In Michigan, Georgia, and Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign is suing to halt ballot counting or to challenge what it says are illegal late-arriving ballots. The campaign also wants to intervene in an ongoing U.S. Supreme Court fight involving Pennsylvania’s rules for late-arriving mail-in ballots. And the president’s team says it will seek a recount in Wisconsin, which former Vice President Joe Biden won narrowly.
The flurry of legal challenges means the election could drag on in complicated, messy ways for days or even weeks. The combination of potential recounts and the specter of the U.S. Supreme Court’s involvement suggest some parallels to the infamous Florida recount that decided the 2000 presidential election—except this time, multiple states are involved.
On the other hand, it’s also possible that Wednesday’s actual and threatened legal actions will end up being
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