Election Law

No new wave of election lawsuits emerged Tuesday; which pending cases could make a difference?

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A wave of Election Day litigation did not materialize Tuesday, even as President Donald Trump vowed to take voting cases to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Trump said early Wednesday that he won the election, although the results were still in doubt, report Reuters and Law360.

Trump described the election as “a major fraud” and an embarrassment. “We want the law to be used in a proper manner,” he said. “So we’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop. We don’t want them to find any ballots at 4 o’clock in the morning and add them to the list. It’s a very sad moment.”

Trump didn’t elaborate on his fraud claim or on his plan to bring election challenges to the Supreme Court.

Only a few new lawsuits were filed on Election Day, USA Today reports. Two lawsuits alleged that the board of elections in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, had violated the law by opening and inspecting ballots before Election Day and by giving some voters a chance to cure ballots with errors.

In other recent lawsuits: Protesters in North Carolina sued after they were pepper-sprayed; Republicans in Nevada sought without success to stop the processing of mail-in ballots, so they could observe what was happening; and an immigrant advocacy group in Arkansas sued over restrictions on voter assistance.

Court watchers expected more lawsuits to be filed Wednesday, Law.com reports.

The Washington Post, meanwhile, looks at pending lawsuits in key states. The issues are:

• Can drive-thru ballots cast in Harris County, Texas, be counted? The Texas Supreme Court and a federal judge in Houston said the nearly 127,000 votes cast this way should be counted, and a federal appeals court refused to issue an emergency order to stop the voting. It was unclear whether the plaintiffs would continue the litigation, according to the Washington Post.

• Can ballots be counted in Pennsylvania, as long as they are cast by Election Day and received within three days afterward? The Pennsylvania Supreme Court had extended the deadline. The Supreme Court declined expedited review of the case, but the cert petition is still pending, the Washington Post said.

• Can ballots be counted in North Carolina when they arrive by mail between Election Day and Nov. 12? The extended deadline was the result of a consent decree. Republicans have challenged it. The Supreme Court refused to issue an injunction blocking the extension in late October. The Supreme Court could still take up the case, according to the Washington Post.

• Can ballots be counted in Minnesota if they are postmarked by Election Day and received by Nov. 10? A consent decree had allowed the ballots to be counted. The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at St. Louis said the extension was likely unconstitutional, and the late-arriving ballots should be segregated.

• Does Clark County, Nevada, have to change the way it counts mail-in ballots, and does it have to provide the signatures of every registered voter to the Trump campaign? The GOP is appealing adverse rulings by two state judges.

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