“We believe the American people deserve to have full transparency into all vote counting and election certification, and that this is no longer about any single election,” the president said in a statement Friday. “This is about the integrity of our entire election process.”
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The president said that, “from the beginning, we have said that all legal ballots must be counted, and all illegal ballots should not be counted, yet we’ve met resistance for this basic principle by Democrats at every turn.”
“We will pursue this process through every aspect of the law to guarantee the American people have confidence in our government,” he continued. “I will never give up fighting for you and our nation.”
The president’s statement comes as races have yet to be called in key states — Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia and Nevada.
The Trump campaign has already filed lawsuits in a number of states this week, seeking access to poll-watching, as well as a federal lawsuit in Nevada urging officials to stop counting “illegal” ballots, claiming thousands of ballots were sent to non-residents and the deceased.
In Pennsylvania, an appellate court judge cleared the way for the Trump campaign to more closely observe the canvassing of ballots by the Philadelphia County Board of Elections.
Poll watchers were initially required to remain at least 25 feet away from tables where people were carrying on the task of scanning mail and absentee ballots inside the Pennsylvania Convention Center, but Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Christine Fizzano Cannon issued an order requiring “all candidates, watchers, or candidate representatives be permitted to be present for the canvassing process” and “be permitted to observe all aspects of the canvassing process within 6 feet, while adhering to all COVID-19 protocols, including wearing masks and maintaining social distancing.”
The order was to go into effect immediately, or no later than 10:30 a.m. EST on Nov. 5.
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The city of Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Democratic Party appealed the ruling to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, which will decide whether to grant or deny the appeal.
“They’re appealing — I wonder why they’re appealing,” Trump said Thursday. “All we want is to have people watch while they do the tabulation.”
The president, on Thursday, vowed that he and his campaign would “not allow corruption to steal” the election, while maintaining that he will win the 2020 presidential race.
The president said that his “goal is to defend the integrity of the election.”
“If you count the legal votes, I easily win,” the president said. “We will not allow corruption to steal such an important election — or any election for that matter.”
He added: “We can’t allow anyone to silence our voters or manufacture results.”
The president said many polling places wouldn’t let “legally permitted observers” watch the ballot-counting.
“This is a case where they’re trying to steal an election — trying to rig an election,” he said.
The president said that he is “hearing horror stories, absolute horror stories, and we can’t let that happen to the United States of America.”
“It's not a question of who wins, Republican or Democrat. Joe, myself,” Trump said. “We can't let that happen to our country. We can't be disgraced by having something like this happen.”
He added: "So it will be hopefully cleared up maybe soon. I hope soon, but it'll probably go through a process, a legal process, and as you know, I've claimed certain states and he's claiming states. So we can both claim the states. But ultimately, I have a feeling judges are going to have to rule.”
The president went on to say there have “been a lot of shenanigans and we can't stand for that in our country.”
Two days after Election Day, neither candidate had amassed the votes needed to win the White House. Fox News projected victories for Biden in the Great Lakes states, which left him at 264 meaning he was one battleground state away from becoming president-elect.
Trump, with a projected 214 electoral votes, faced a much higher hurdle. To reach 270, he needed to claim all four remaining battlegrounds: Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia and Nevada. Trump generally was projected to receive a larger in-person voter turnout on Election Day, and Biden was thought to have a larger turnaround through vote by mail.