President Donald Trump arrives aboard Air Force One at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport in Detroit, Michigan.
Jonathan Ernst | Reuters
A federal judge in Pennsylvania on Saturday rejected a legal effort by President Donald Trump’s campaign to block millions of votes in the state, the certification of which is expected to confirm a win for President-elect Joe Biden.
The judge’s scathing decision is a crippling blow to Trump’s extremely long-shot bid to invalidate enough ballots in multiple states to reverse Biden’s victory in the national presidential election. The Trump campaign and its allies now have lost or withdrawn more than 30 lawsuits that were part of that effort.
U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann, in his written decision granting a request to dismiss the case, said the campaign’s lawyers, including Rudy Giuliani, had failed to present “compelling legal arguments and factual proof of rampant corruption” in their unprecedented bid to invalidate millions of ballots.
“Instead, this Court has been presented with strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations, unpled in the operative complaint and unsupported by the evidence,” Brann fumed.
“In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state. Our people, laws, and institutions demand more.”
At one point, the judge compared the lawsuit’s claim that voters had been denied equal protection in how their ballots were counted to “Frankstein’s Monster,” since it was “haphazardly stitched together” from two separate theories in an effort to avoid having them separately dimissed because of legal precedent.
Brann’s ruling came four days after Giuliani, arguing in a courtroom for the first time in decades as the president’s personal lawyer, claimed without evidence that Trump had been the victim of “widespread national voter fraud.”
the, an attorney for some of the county election boards whose votes were being questioned in the Trump campaign’s lawsuit, accused Giuliani of talking about “some fantasy world.”
“This just is disgraceful!” Aronchick said of Giuliani’s arguments during the hearing.
Brann seemed to say as much in his ruling.
“Plaintiffs ask this Court to disenfranchise almost seven million voters,” the judge wrote.
“This Court has been unable to find any case in which a plaintiff has sought such a drastic remedy in the contest of an election, in terms of the sheer volume of votes asked to be invalidated,” Brann said.
“One might expect that when seeking such a startling outcome, a plaintiff would come formidably armed with compelling legal arguments and factual proof of rampant corruption, such that this Court would have no option but to regrettably grant the proposed injunctive relief despite the impact it would have on such a large group of citizens.
“That has not happened.”
Biden is currently projected to win 306 votes in the Electoral College. Trump has refused to concede the contest as he, Giuliani and other Trump surrogates falsely claim he won the election.