Wednesday, November 18, 2020

With Rudy to the rescue, what could go wrong. Read more about Trump's failing legal attack on our election

Trump turns from the courts to right-wing media to try to hold the White House reports Joan McCarter of the Daily Kos Staff.

It’s not so awful that Trump keeps losing in court. It’s far worse. Because RUDY!

Here’s how two-time popular vote-losing impeached lame duck Donald Trump fared in his election lawsuits on Monday: The plaintiffs—Republican voters represented by James Bopp Jr. of the right-wing True the Vote group—dropped their suits claiming general fraud in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia, and Wisconsin; three attorneys on his key suit in Pennsylvania withdrew from the case; their replacement failed to secure a delay in a hearing on the case; and the Michigan Court of Appeals denied a Republican effort to stop the state from certifying the election on the grounds of “failure to persuade the Court of the existence of manifest error requiring reversal.” That put Trump and the Republicans at 1–24 in the win/loss count on their suits.

Trump, by all accounts, is not pleased with how his lawsuits have been progressing, with lawyers dropping out like flies and no important wins. That seems to be behind the replacement of the entire team representing him in his federal suit to block certification of Pennsylvania’s results on Monday following the withdrawal of the prominent regional law firm Porter Wright Morris & Arthur. So now he’s got this new lawyer, the one who couldn’t get more time from the judge to get up to speed. This lawyer is Marc A. Scaringi, a conservative talk show host and lawyer who declared on his radio show on Nov. 7 that Trump’s lawsuit against the state was a loser. “At the end of the day, in my view, the litigation will not work,” the said. ”It will not reverse this election." That’s a vote of confidence, huh? But it’s okay for Trump, because he’s got reinforcements now: Rudy Giuliani.

Rick Hasen tweets this gem: Gets Worse for Trump Campaign in Its PA Suit: Giuliani Misrepresents His Bar Status. https://electionlawblog.org/?p=118750

I have already written how the Trump campaign sought a last minute substitution of lawyers and then a delay of the preliminary injunction hearing in Trump’s Pennsylvania lawsuit seeking to delay certification of the vote.

Well now Rudy Giuliani has asked to make an appearance in the case for the Trump campaign. His application says he’s a member of the DC Bar in good standing (seeking pro hac vice status). But he’s suspended for not paying his bar fees.

This lawyering is a joke.

Yes, believe it or not all Trump’s hopes for getting the Pennsylvania case to the U.S. Supreme Court rest on Rudy, who last appeared in court in 1992. That’ll go well. Trump, according to The Washington Post’s sources, is “frustrated that his campaign lawyers were not appearing more frequently on television to amplify his baseless claim that he was the real election winner.” So he’s put Giuliani and campaign legal adviser Jenna Ellis in charge of both the legal and public relations efforts. You can guess which is the more important part of this to Trump. He wants to see his loyalists when he turns on Fox News, where his base will see him “keep fighting,” the Post’s source says.

“He is more dug into his position than he was at the beginning,” the source, a Trump adviser, said. “He thinks this is his base for 2024, and that half the country are warriors fighting for him, and that he’s got to keep fighting.” According to that adviser, there are voices telling Trump it’s time to give up. But there’s a louder voice Trump loves to hear, which is Giuliani’s: “In a meeting Friday, Giuliani told Trump that his advisers had been lying to him about his odds of prevailing and that he actually could win, a person with knowledge of the meeting said,” the Post reports.

They’ve convinced him that the debunked claim that Dominion Voting Systems machines in some states deleted Trump votes is real, and he is now “personally obsessed” with it, even asking national security officials in the government about the company. Giuliani and Ellis are also true believers in this conspiracy theory. Ellis is the perfect counterpart to Giuliani and Trump, an “uncontrollable figure” in the campaign who regularly fed Trump’s fraud obsession, who would make television appearances without coordinating with the campaign, and who recently started calling herself “President-Elect Jenna Ellis” on Twitter. For some reason.

So rather than trying to win in court with valid cases, the plan now seems to be riling up the base by blanketing right-wing media with allies. If they can’t win in the courts, they’ll try to win by intimidation, like the campaign led by Sen. Lindsey Graham to pressure Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to throw out legal ballots. Raffensperger reports not just pressure from Graham, but death threats against him and his wife.

In other words, Trump’s reverting to form, going to what’s been working for him so far: enraging his army of deplorables. The good news is that it’s not a winning strategy to get to the Supreme Court, or to get the court on his side. The bad news is that it’s very dangerous for the country.

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