A federal judge on Saturday dismissed the most important lawsuit that outgoing President Donald Trump’s campaign had filed in Pennsylvania, leaving him virtually no options to reverse the outcome of the election in that state on which the keys to the White House depend.
Judge Matthew Brann’s decision means that Pennsylvania’s counties have a free hand in certifying the result of the November 3 election, for which the deadline is Monday, and thus confirm President-elect Joe Biden as the winner of the territory.
The lawsuit sought to invalidate millions of votes cast by mail on the grounds that the ability of voters to correct errors on their ballots in certain counties hurt Trump’s party, the Republican.
The magistrate ruled that Trump’s campaign had resorted to “faulty and unmeritorious legal arguments and speculative accusations” in its attempt to invalidate millions of votes.
“In the United States of America this cannot justify the suppression of the right to vote of a single voter, much less all the voters of its sixth most populous state,” Brann wrote.
The decision is a profound setback for the legal strategy of the Trump campaign, which has already lost other cases in Pennsylvania, as well as in Michigan, Georgia, Nevada and Arizona in its claim without evidence of voter fraud.
This lawsuit was the last major one active in Pennsylvania, and the outgoing president’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, personally defended it during a hearing last Tuesday.
Without Pennsylvania, it is virtually impossible for Trump to reverse the election result since Biden’s lead in the Electoral College is such (306 votes to 232), that he acted as a “whistle-blower” for the president. The president would have to prove significant fraud in several states to prevail.
Trump already received two other setbacks this Friday: the first in Georgia, which certified Biden’s victory; and the second in Michigan, where two state legislators whom he invited to the White House said, after the meeting, that they had no information that could change the result of the elections in their state.
Without turning the result around in multiple states, which is extremely unlikely, Trump will not be able to prevent Biden from taking office on January 20, and the paths to that end are closing with each passing day.
Trump’s team only has until December 8 to develop its legal strategy, because by that day all states should have resolved any disputes, and the governor of each territory must send the certified results to Congress.