On Monday the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania that many people believe will be an important cornerstone to the final results of the 2020 Presidential election. The following is unedited text from the lawsuit:
DONALD J. TRUMP FOR PRESIDENT, INC.; LAWRENCE ROBERTS; and DAVID JOHN HENRY; Plaintiffs, v. KATHY BOOCKVAR, in her capacity as Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; ALLEGHENY COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; CENTRE COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; CHESTER COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; DELAWARE COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; MONTGOMERY COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; NORTHAMPTON COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; and PHILADELPHIA COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS; Defendants.
American citizens deserve fair elections. Every legal – not illegal –
vote should be counted. And no government power, be it state or federal, may deny
American citizens the right to observe the process by which votes are cast, processed,
and tabulated. We must protect our democracy with complete transparency.
- Nothing less than the integrity of the 2020 Presidential election is at
stake in this action. Defendants, the very officials charged with ensuring the
integrity of the election in Pennsylvania, have so mismanaged the election process
that no one – not the voters and not President Trump’s campaign – can have any
faith that their most sacred and basic rights under the United States Constitution are
being protected. The evidence is plain that Defendants have been and are blatantly
violating the protections and procedures, including those enacted by the
Pennsylvania General Assembly, vitally necessary to ensure that the votes of the
citizens of Pennsylvania are not illegally diluted by invalid ballots and that the
election is free and fair.
- While the bedrock of American elections has been transparency, almost
every critical aspect of Pennsylvania’s November 3, 2020 General Election was
effectively shrouded in secrecy. Democrat-majority counties provided political
parties and candidates, including the Trump Campaign, no meaningful access or
- 3 –
actual opportunity to review and assess mail-in ballots during the pre-canvassing
- Allegheny and Philadelphia Counties alone received and processed
682,479 mail-in and absentee ballots without review by the political parties and
candidates. These are unprecedented numbers in Pennsylvania’s elections history.
Rather than engaging in an open and transparent process to give credibility to
Pennsylvania’s brand-new voting system, the processes were hidden during the
receipt, review, opening, and tabulation of those 682,479 votes in direct
contravention of the Election Code.
- Allegheny and Pennsylvania counties conducted the canvassing and
tabulation in convention center rooms and placed observers far away from the action.
In the case of Philadelphia County, when an emergency order was issued requiring
them to provide meaningful access to representatives, Philadelphia failed to comply.
- Worse, Democratic-heavy counties violated the mandates of the
Election Code and the determinations of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court,
advantaging voters in Democratic-heavy counties as compared to those in
Republican-heavy counties. Democratic-heavy counties engaged in pre-canvass
activities prior to November 3, 2020, by reviewing received mail-in ballots for
deficiencies, such as lacking the inner secrecy envelope or lacking a signature of the
elector on the outer declaration envelope. Those offending Counties then would
- 4 –
notify those voters in order to allow them to cure their ballot deficiencies by voting
provisionally on Election Day or cancelling their previously mailed ballot and
issuing a replacement. In other words, those counties provided their mail-in voters
with the opportunity to cure mail-in and absentee ballot deficiencies, while
Republican-heavy counties followed the law and did not provide a notice and cure
process, disenfranchising those that themselves complied with the Election Code to
case legal votes.
- The commonality and statewide nature of these irregularities impacts
- “The right to vote is protected in more than the initial allocation of the
franchise. Equal protection applies as well to the manner of its exercise. Having
once granted the right to vote on equal terms, the State may not, by later arbitrary
and disparate treatment, value one person’s vote over that of another.” Bush v. Gore,
531 U.S. 98, 104-05 (2000). All citizens, including Pennsylvanians, have rights
under the United States Constitution to the full, free, and accurate elections built
upon transparency and verifiability. Citizens are entitled – and deserve – to vote in
a transparent system that is designed to protect against vote dilution.