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In the News: Attorney General Bill Barr authorized United States Justice Department prosecutors to conduct a probe on claims of voting irregularities in the 2020 Presidential Election, according to a memo acquired by The New York Times.

The memo from Barr called for an expeditious investigation before the official certification of election results.

“Given that voting in our current elections has now concluded, I authorize you to pursue substantial allegations of voting and vote tabulation irregularities prior to the certification of elections in your jurisdictions,” the memo read. “… specious, speculative, fanciful or far-fetched claims [however] should not be a basis for initiating federal inquiries.”

This action comes after the Trump administration filed lawsuits in key battleground states, in an effort to prove voter fraud in the 2020 projected election results. 

In a news conference on Saturday, Rudy Giuliani detailed the allegations as substantial which would require a thorough investigation.

“I don’t know if there is enough evidence to set aside the entire election … maybe in Pennsylvania,” Giuliani said. 

“However, there certainly is enough evidence to disqualify a certain number of ballots [these] should be thrown out and that number of ballots should be taken out of the count,” he said.

“That could affect the election.”

The allegations, according to many sources however, are either challenged or largely specious. Incidental examples, however, have been reported.  

For example, one case of a deceased person voting has been recognized as plausible by election officials in the state of Arizona. Another instance was also noted by the DOJ in late September, showing that Pennsylvania officials had tampered with nine military ballots.

In addition, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh Mcenany presented 234 signed affidavits in a segment on Hannity and stated:

“We keep hearing the drumbeat of ‘Where’s the evidence?’ Right here, Sean,” McEnany said presenting a 234-page stack of affidavits.

“Two-hundred, thirty-four pages of sworn affidavits. These are real people, real allegations, signed with notaries, who are alleging the following, among other contentions,” she added. 

“They are alleging — this is one county, Wayne County, Michigan — they are saying that there was a batch of ballots where 60% had the same signature, they’re saying that 35 ballots had no voter record, but they were counted anyway, that 50 ballots were run multiple times through a tabulation machine, that one woman said her son was deceased but nevertheless somehow voted.”

Trump is behind in Pennsylvania, Georgia, Arizona, Wisconsin, and Michigan by 46,000, 10,000, 17,000, 20,000, and 146,000 respectively––all places where he has claimed voter irregularities. 

Some experts have concluded that surmounting this projected lead by way of alleged voter irregularities may be out of reach.

Election law expert Josh Blackman, of South Texas College, in dialogue with ABC 13 stated

“At this point in the election, it’s beyond what’s called the margin of litigation,” Blackman said. “In other words, even if President Trump’s lawsuits are successful, they still won’t make up enough votes to push him over the top. So the litigation, I think, is mostly for show. It’s not going to change who the next president is. Biden has secured more votes by a substantial enough margin that the courts do not provide the President with a path to reelection.” 

Robert Yablon, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Law School, in dialogue with Reuters largely concurred stating: 

“The current legal maneuvering is mainly a way for the Trump campaign to try to extend the ball game in the long-shot hope that some serious anomaly will emerge,” Yablon said. “As of now, we haven’t seen any indication of systematic irregularities in the vote count.”

In order to overturn the projected election results, Trump would need to find enough instances of voter fraud to exceed the lead of projected winner Joe Biden in Pennsylvania and at least two other states. A Georgia election official stated, however, that finding all of his state’s 10,353 vote differences (the closest difference between the two candidates) as fraudulent to be unlikely. 

It should be noted as well, that this isn’t the first election to be widely contested. 

Only 31% of Democrats expressed high confidence in accurate vote counting in the 2016 presidential election while 43% accepted Trump as the legitimate president, according to a YouGov polling.  

Democrats spearheaded an investigation of purported Russian collusion with the Trump administration after the 2016 election. The inquiry, however, was ultimately found to have no objective corroboration.

Furthermore, the initial basis for their probe was not based on any empirical evidence but was anecdotal according to former Obama Director of National Intelligence James Clapper in 2017.

“I never saw any direct empirical evidence that the Trump campaign or someone in it was plotting/conspiring with the Russians to meddle with the election,” he said. 

“That’s not to say that there weren’t concerns about the evidence we were seeing, anecdotal evidence. … But I do not recall any instance where I had direct evidence,” Clapper said..

Trump too made similar accusations during and after the 2016 election, claiming systematic and widespread voter fraud across the country, all of which were disproven by politifact.

Author’s note: These two aforementioned examples potentially demonstrate that dubious accusations and ideologically-driven probes are an evil belonging not solely to one political party but rather, one that is shared across the political spectrum.

When did this happen?: Monday, Nov. 9 2020

Where did this happen?: Capitol Hill, Washington D.C.

What the left is saying:  “I just think it’s an embarrassment, quite frankly,” Biden said in response to Trump not officially conceding the election. 

“The only thing that — how can I say this tactfully — I think it will not help the president’s legacy,” he concluded.

What the right is saying:Both candidates have every right to exhaust every legal remedy under the law.” Utah Senator Mike Lee (R) said in response to the legal action being taken by the Trump Campaign. 

” … especially in a close, hotly disputed presidential election, the candidates are uniquely positioned to decide whether to request recounts, verify the accuracy of data, and otherwise take steps to ensure that all votes have been counted properly and lawfully.”

Written ByDaniel Seidman

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