The Trump campaign has officially filed a lawsuit in Wisconsin's Supreme Court in an attempt to overturn election results in the state.
The Wisconsin Elections Commission confirmed Joe Biden's victory Monday in the battleground state following a partial recount. Milwaukee and Dane counties finished their recounts over the weekend and results added to Biden's 20,600 vote margin over President Donald Trump.
The president's campaign has repeatedly alleged fraud in the state's election, though it has not presented any proof. The election officials for both counties who did recounts said there was no fraud uncovered in the process.
The WEC confirmation of the results opened a five-day window for the president's campaign to file a lawsuit.
The campaign filed a lawsuit Tuesday morning, in an attempt to overturn results by disqualifying as many as 200,000 ballots.
"What we had is an abuse of the absentee process, dramatically in Dane and Milwaukee County,” said Jim Troupis, attorney for the Trump Campaign.
The suit is specifically seeking to dismiss absentee ballots where the clerks' offices "inserted missing information,” people cast ballots "claiming Indefinite Confinement status" even If they "no longer qualified,” and absentee ballots "improperly cast or received at ‘Democracy in the Park’ events,” which were held in Madison.
The lawsuit also targets many in-person absentee voters who the Trump campaign claims did not follow Wisconsin law which requires "voters submit a written application."
"We introduce evidence in the proceeding we introduced evidence that they in fact followed the law. They in fact required appropriate application in advance of the in-person voting,” said Troupis.
In a filing late Tuesday evening, Gov. Evers and his legal team issued a forceful rebuttal against the lawsuit: "President Trump’s Petition seeks nothing less than to overturn the will of nearly 3.3 million Wisconsin voters. It is a shocking and outrageous assault on our democracy. The relief he seeks is wrong as a matter of law, incorrect as a matter of fact, and mistaken as a matter of procedure. Indeed, he has sought relief in the wrong court and has refused to follow the proper steps under the statute that he himself acknowledges governs the appeal of recounts. And by focusing on alleged technical violations in only two counties, he has made plain 7 that his intent is not to fairly determine who Wisconsinites voted for to lead our country. He is simply trying to seize Wisconsin’s electoral votes, even though he lost the statewide election."
Mayor Tom Barrett says Milwaukee conducted in-person absentee voting exactly like all the other counties in the state. Barrett addressed the Wisconsin Elections Commission meeting on Tuesday to voice his opposition to the Trump campaign's attempt to throw out those votes.
"They are challenging the entire election system in Wisconsin claiming entire groups of absentee by mail and absentee in person were not legitimate. And I would add they are only doing it in select counties. These claims are obviously an egregious attempt to discredit this fair election,” said Barrett.
Wisconsin Election Commissioner and Republican Dean Knudson spoke out Tuesday afternoon in the commission meeting that he believes this lawsuit still proves Wisconsin has safe elections.
“I am in a position to look at fraud in Wisconsin and I have yet to see a credible claim of fraudulent activity in this election. The Trump campaign has not made any claims of fraud in this election. The filing in, there is some disputes over matters of law,” said Knudson.
The WEC has debunked previous claimsfor the campaign about fraud in the election process.
The president's campaign lawsuit included four instances where it claims votes were counted illegally:
- Lawsuit claims municipal clerks were instructed to fill in missing information on returned absentee ballots based on their "personal knowledge" or "lists or databases."
- Lawsuit claims municipal clerks issued absentee ballots to voters without requiring written absentee ballot applications.
- Lawsuit claims election officials permitted voters who claimed to be indefinitely confined to "circumvent voter ID laws" without "meeting the requirements for that status."
- Lawsuit claims the city of Madison created "unlawful polling locations at over 200 parks and city locations" through its Democracy in the Park voting events. The suit claims that these locations were outside of the county's approved polling locations
Read the full petition below:
2020AP1971 Pet for Orig Action (12!1!20) by TODAY'S TMJ4 on Scribd
Read the supporting memo below:
2020AP1971 Memo in Supp Pet. Orig Action (12!1!20) by TODAY'S TMJ4 on Scribd
This story was originally published by WTMJ in Milwaukee.