In a chaotic effort to overturn the election results, President Trump and lawyers representing his campaign spent weeks arguing without convincing evidence that widespread electoral fraud was corrupting the vote count in many battlefield states.
But their trials disputing the outcome have repeatedly failed due to faulty filings, sloppy paperwork, questionable demands from witnesses and lawyers who admitted in court that they are not alleging fraud.
Here are some of the most embarrassing moments.
Days after the election, lawyers for the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in Maricopa County, claiming, in part, that a number of Republican voters were using Sharpies to mark their ballots, making them unreadable to voters. voting machines and leading to countless votes.
The complaint also included affidavits from several voters and poll observers who said polling officers took advantage of the confusion to overturn votes for Mr. Trump.
But during a hearing on November 12, Kory Langhofer, a lawyer for the Trump campaign, admitted that the complaint was not based on evidence of electoral fraud but rather on a “limited number of cases” of “errors. in good faith ”in the count.
“This is not a case of fraud,” Langhofer said. “We are not alleging fraud. We are not saying that anyone is trying to steal the election. “
During questioning, witnesses repeatedly stated that they had no reason to believe that their ballots or those of other voters had not been counted.
Later in the hearing, Daniel Arellano, the lawyer for the Arizona Democratic Party, questioned Zack Alcyone, one of the witnesses, who admitted he was a business partner of Mr Langhofer.
When asked if he was paid to testify in the case, Mr. Alcyone said he was unsure.
“Uh, not that I know of, I haven’t discussed it,” he said.
“But can you be?” Asked Mr. Arellano.
“It’s possible, I guess, I’m not sure,” Mr. Alcyone said.
A federal lawsuit brought by conservative lawyer L. Lin Wood Jr. has sought to stop Georgia’s statewide certification of voting, saying systemic issues with the electoral process tainted the results of the State.
Russell J. Ramsland Jr., a cybersecurity worker and expert witness in the case, filed an affidavit on Wednesday claiming his company had discovered evidence of inconsistencies in electronic voting machines. But the inconsistencies he claimed to identify were in districts of Michigan, not Georgia.
The affidavit also mentioned a number of towns and counties in which Mr Ramsland’s analysis pointedly showed that the number of votes cast exceeded the number of eligible voters. But most, if not all, of the places Mr. Ramsland listed appeared to be townships and counties in Minnesota, not Michigan.
In a hearing Thursday, Trump-appointed judge Steven D. Grimberg dismissed allegations of voter fraud.
“I understand that’s your argument, but what’s your proof?” he asked after listening to Ray S. Smith III, an attorney for Mr. Wood.
“To stop certification at the 11th hour, literally, would create confusion and a denial of the right to vote which, in my opinion, has no basis in fact and in law,” Justice Grimberg said.
He rejected the challenge.
In a Nov. 13 opinion, a Michigan federal judge methodically dismantled the testimony of six witnesses who said they observed irregularities in the vote counting process in Detroit.
Questioning their credibility and knowledge of the electoral process, Judge Timothy M. Kenny noted that witnesses skipped a briefing that may have answered many of the questions they raised.
“Perhaps if the advocates of the plaintiffs’ election candidates had attended the visit to the TCF center counting location on October 29, 2020, the questions and concerns could have been answered before election day, ”he said. -he writes. “Unfortunately, they did not do so and, as a result, the plaintiffs’ depositors did not have a full understanding of the process for counting the ballots in the absence of the TCF.”
In another case targeting postal votes in Michigan, a lawyer for the Trump campaign appeared to have initially mistakenly filed a lawsuit in a federal claims court in Washington, DC, which lacked the authority for the ‘hear.
“The complaint is captioned as if it had been filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan,” Judge Elaine D. Kaplan wrote in an order transferring the case to the appropriate court. “Instead, however, it was filed with this court, presumably by accident.”
Anticipating that Pennsylvania would be the tipping point for the election, advocates for the Trump campaign braced for court challenges challenging the votes in several parts of the state.
In recent weeks, however, lawyers have repeatedly admitted, under pressure from judges, that no evidence of electoral fraud had materialized.
In the Federal District Court in Williamsport, Pa., The president’s lead counsel, Rudolph W. Giuliani, broke with his comments outside the courtroom supporting the president’s allegations of widespread fraud.
“This is not a case of fraud,” he told Judge Matthew W. Brann.
During argument in a Montgomery County case on Nov. 10, Jonathan Goldstein, a Trump campaign lawyer, has repeatedly said he also saw no evidence of voter fraud during the vote there. was contested:
THE TRIBUNAL: In your petition, which is right in front of me – and I have read it several times – you are not claiming that voters or the County Council are guilty of fraud, do you? It’s correct?
SIR. GOLDSTEIN: Your honor, accusing people of fraud is an important step. And it’s rare that I call someone a liar, and I don’t call the DNC board or anyone else involved in this liar business. Everyone does it in good faith. The DNC comes in good faith. We’re all just trying to have an election. We think it was a mistake, but we think it is a fatal mistake, and these ballots should not be counted.
THE TRIBUNAL: I understand. I’m asking you a specific question, and I’m looking for a specific answer. Are you claiming that there was fraud in relation to these 592 disputed ballots?
SIR. GOLDSTEIN: To my current knowledge, no.
THE TRIBUNAL: Are you claiming that there was undue or improper influence on the voter with respect to these 592 ballots?
SIR. GOLDSTEIN: To my current knowledge, no.
Lawyers representing the Trump campaign in Bucks County signed court documents on Wednesday informing a judge that there was no evidence of fraud in relation to the ballots they were contesting there.
The campaign had filed a complaint with the County Pleadings Court, disputing more than 2,200 ballots as invalid. But in a joint statement of facts with lawyers for the Democratic Party, lawyers for the Trump campaign admitted, “The petitioners are not alleging, and there is no evidence of fraud in connection with the disputed ballots.”
Lawyers also said there was no evidence of “misconduct” or “irregularity” in the election.