President Donald Trump’s effort to overturn the election results is about to smash into reality: a gauntlet of battleground state deadlines that are poised to extinguish his increasingly desperate attempts to hold onto the presidency.
Michigan is due to certify its state results Monday. Arizona and Pennsylvania counties must also finalize their results the same day. On the heels of Georgia’s certification of Joe Biden’s victory on Friday, the series of administrative deadlines stands to all but formalize Biden’s win by officially affirming the results in enough contested states to put him over the 270-electoral-vote threshold.
As late as Friday, the president summoned Michigan lawmakers to the White House as part of his last-ditch lobbying effort to convince them to intervene to stop the state’s certification of the election results….
So far congressional Republicans have largely kept Trump at arm’s length, refusing to embrace his allegations of fraud but insisting he has the right to lodge fraud complaints and take legal action. Some of Trump’s closer allies in the Capitol have called for a hearing on election “irregularities,” suggesting the complaints from the Trump campaign deserve to be pursued.
In the meantime, Trump’s arguments have made inroads with Republican voters, with polls reflecting deep distrust in the election results, despite no substantiveevidence of fraud.
“It’s a crass anti-democratic effort that is bound to fail but it is helping to undermine the confidence of Trump supporters in the process,” said Rick Hasen, a law professor at the University of California Irvine. “So this is not a cost-less exercise. Just because it’s not going to work doesn’t mean that’s harmless.”