A judge in Pennsylvania has dismissed a lawsuit from the Trump campaign that sought to invalidate millions of mail-in votes in the battleground state.
Judge Matthew Brann said the suit, which rested on allegations of irregularities, was “without merit”.
The move paves the way for Pennsylvania to next week certify Joe Biden’s win – he leads by more than 80,000 votes.
It is the latest blow to Donald Trump, who is trying to overturn his loss in the 3 November presidential election.
He has refused to concede and made allegations of widespread electoral fraud, without providing any evidence.
The lack of a concession has upended the process that normally follows a US election.
Mr Biden is projected to defeat President Trump 306 to 232 in the US electoral system, which determines who becomes president – far above the 270 he needs to win.
The Trump campaign has lost a slew of lawsuits contesting results from the election, and their latest efforts focus on stopping the swing states that handed Mr Biden his win certifying the results – an essential step for the Democrat to be formally declared victor.
Pennsylvania judge gives scathing verdict
He said his “court has been presented with strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations”.
“In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state,” the judge wrote.
The Trump campaign argued that the state had violated the US Constitution’s guarantee of equal protection under the law as some, Democratic-run counties allowed voters to fix errors on their ballots while Republican-run counties did not.
But in his ruling Judge Brann dismissed the claim, saying “like Frankenstein’s Monster” it had been “haphazardly stitched together”. He said even if it was the basis for a case then the Trump campaign’s solution went too far.
Mr Trump’s legal team announced it would urgently seek to appeal against the decision.
Few Republicans have called on the president to concede, but following the judge’s ruling Republican Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey said Mr Trump had exhausted all legal options in the state and urged him to accept the result.
What’s the situation in other battleground states?
Also on Saturday the Trump campaign called for another recount in Georgia, a day after a by-hand recount confirmed Mr Biden’s win in the state.
The campaign said it “has to include signature matching and other vital safeguards”.
In another swing state won by Mr Biden, Michigan, Republican officials wrote to the state’s electoral board to request a two-week delay in certifying the results.
They called for an audit of the presidential vote in the largest county, home to Detroit, after it was contested by the Trump camp.
But the Michigan Department of State said delays and audits were not permitted by law.
In Wisconsin, election officials accused Trump supporters of obstructing the state’s recount of votes. They said observers for Mr Trump were in some cases challenging every single ballot to deliberately slow down proceedings.
If the recount is not concluded by 1 December – the deadline for Wisconsin to certify its votes – the way is open for the Trump camp to pursue a lawsuit.
Mr Biden has a lead of more than 20,000 in the state.
Why is election certification important?
When Americans vote in a presidential election, they are actually voting in a state contest, not a national one.
They are voting for state electors who will then cast one vote each for president. These electors usually follow the will of the electorate – in Michigan, for instance, they should all vote for Joe Biden because he won the state.
The states get a varying number of votes, equivalent to the number of their representatives in the US Congress – the House and the Senate.
What is typically a mere formality during normal elections – the bipartisan certification of state vote totals – has become the latest battleground in the president’s attempts to maintain power for the next four years.
Could Trump actually be successful? It’s not impossible, but the chances are very, very slim. First of all, the president would have to overturn the results in multiple states, where Biden’s leads range from tens of thousands of votes to more than a hundred thousand. This isn’t 2000, when everything came down just to Florida.
What’s more, many of the states Trump’s legal team is targeting – Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania – have Democratic governors who are not going to sit idly by while all of this takes place.
That doesn’t mean Biden’s supporters aren’t worried, however. While the odds of this happening are along the lines of the earth being hit by a giant meteor or someone getting struck by lightning while winning the lottery, having victory snatched away at this point would be such a cataclysmic political event that the remote prospect of such a possibility is enough to give Democrats cold sweats.
Elon Musk Is Not The Second Richest Person In The World — Here’s Why
Thanks to Tesla’s roaring stock, Elon Musk’s net worth has nearly quadrupled during the Covid-19 pandemic, racing from $24.6 billion in mid-March to a current $126.8 billion by Forbes’ estimate. But despite this meteoric rise, the 49-year-old is not the world’s second-richest person yet.
Forbes currently has Musk in the No. 3 spot, behind Jeff Bezos, who reigns supreme at $182.6 billion, and French luxury goods tycoon Bernard Arnault, worth $140.6 billion. With the surge in the value of Tesla shares this week, Musk surpassed Bill Gates, who is now in fourth place, worth $119.4 billion
Musk owns 21% of Tesla but has pledged more than half his stake as collateral for personal loans; Forbes applies a 25% discount to his shareholding to account for the loans. Musk’s net worth estimate includes $25 billion worth of options that he was awarded since May as part of a historic 12-tranche compensation plan.
Musk became eligible for the fourth tranche in late October after Tesla exceeded the cumulative EBITDA requirement, but Tesla has yet to confirm in public filings that it has certified the results. A representative for Musk did not reply to a request for comment from Forbes in time for publication. Until the receipt of the fourth tranche is confirmed, Forbes is only counting some 25 million options from the package towards Musk’s net worth.
Musk also owns an estimated 48% of SpaceX, the rocket company that recently made its first launch with astronauts on board. Investors valued SpaceX at $46 billion in August. After applying Forbes’ 10% private company discount, Musk’s SpaceX stake is worth just under $20 billion.
Tesla’s shares have risen 36% since Tuesday November 17 when S&P Global announced that the electric car company would be added to the S&P 500 index on December 21. The addition to the index means that more mutual funds tied to the S&P 500 will buy Tesla stock.
With a current market capitalization of $525 billion, Tesla is worth far more than Toyota ($198 billion) and GM ($66 billion) combined. In the first three quarters of 2020, Tesla delivered 318,000 cars, a small fraction of the number produced by the world’s larger automakers.
“I really couldn’t care less,” Musk emailed Forbes about his net worth in July. “These numbers rise and fall, but what really matters is making great products that people love.”
Ghana Election 2020: Exclusive: Nana Addo Allegedly Caught Taking Bribe – Video To Premier Soon
Ghana Election 2020: The President of the Republic of Ghana Nana Addo-Dankwa Akuffo-Addo is allegedly caught taking bribe, which is said to have been videotaped secretly.
The President could face bribery corruption hurdles by the people of Ghana and the media as well, because, the NPP has made Ghanaians believe Akufo-Addo is incorruptible.
According to information gathered, the president will soon be exposed by his corrupt deals he has been engaging in the office of the president.
The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) is spreading information across their social media platforms propounding the allegation of president Akufo-Addo taking bribe
The video is said to be premiered by a pro-NDC member Kelvin Ekow Taylor. They say the video will expose the President of Akufo-Addo taking bribe.
Biden Appoints Nigerian-Born Adewale Adeyemo As US Deputy Treasury Secretary
US President-elect, Joe Biden has appointed Nigerian-born attorney, Adewale Adeyemo, as Deputy Treasury Secretary
“It’s official! Wale Adeyemo becomes the first-ever Nigerian American Deputy Secretary of the US Treasury, in the history of the country!! Congrats to Wale,” the Chairman of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), Abike Dabiri-Erewa tweeted on Monday, confirming the appointment of the former senior international economic adviser during the Obama administration.
Adeyemo will serve under former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who Biden plans to appoint to lead the US Treasury Department.
Born in Nigeria, Adeyemo was raised in California where he obtained a bachelor’s degree before proceeding to Yale Law School for his legal education.
Before his appointment into the Obama administration, Adeyemo worked as an editor at the Hamilton Project, then served as senior advisor and deputy chief of staff to Jack Lew in the United States Department of Treasury.
He later worked as the chief negotiator for the Trans-Pacific Partnership and also served as the first chief of staff of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau under Elizabeth Warren.
In 2015, he was appointed to concurrently serve as Deputy National Security Advisor for International Economics and deputy director of the National Economic Council.
He went on to become the first president of the Obama Foundation.
According to Politico, Biden is also expected to name Cecilia Rouse, an African American economist at Princeton University, to lead the Council of Economic Advisers.
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