Trump's Maneuver to Intimidate Michigan Lawmakers Fails

Mish

As easily expected, another Trumpian ploy to steal the election fails.

'We Will Follow the Law' 

Michigan GOP Leaders after meeting Trump, issue a statement 'We Will Follow the Law'

Seven Michigan lawmakers traveled to meet with Trump for about an hour. The visit came as supporters of the president have moved in recent days to overturn the results of the state's election, which Democratic President-elect Joe Biden won by more than 154,000 votes in unofficial returns.

"We have not yet been made aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election in Michigan and, as legislative leaders, we will follow the law and follow the normal process regarding Michigan’s electors, just as we have said throughout this election," House Speaker Lee Chatfield and Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey said in a joint statement after the meeting.

"These are simple truths that should provide confidence in our elections," they added.

Not Tiddlywinks 

The White House press secretary defended the meeting "He routinely meets with lawmakers from all across the country.” 

Let's get real. This was a strange meeting at the very least. 

Trump did not invite Michigan legislators to the White House to play tiddlywinks or for idle chat no matter what they actually discussed.

Giuliani Encourages Michigan Legislators to Appoint New Electors

This tiddlywinks maneuver comes at a time when Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani openly advocated state legislators to appoint a new set of electors who would vote for Trump as noted by Time.

Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal attorney told associates that his goal is to cast enough doubt on the election that state legislatures won’t certify the results for Biden. “Rudy told people he was trying to get the legislatures to flip,” a source familiar with the campaign’s legal strategy tells TIME. “Rudy’s view of the world is if he does a good enough job inflaming the results, Pennsylvania won’t certify, Wisconsin won’t certify"

“Trump is losing in court after court, in state after state. So the damage he’s doing isn’t to the likelihood of President-elect Biden assuming office in January 20, which will happen,” says Josh Geltzer, the executive director of Georgetown Law’s Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection. “The damage Trump’s doing is to how large portions of the American public view the legitimacy of that presidency and of our democracy itself. Democratic self-government is one of the great acts of collective faith in human history, and Trump is trying desperately to break that faith.”

The Trump campaign’s legal strategy is “not going to stop Biden from being president; it’s going to be corrosive,” says Ned Foley, director of the election law program at The Ohio State University. “If each and every time we can’t acknowledge the validity of the opponent’s win, then at some point people will stop believing in the process and accepting it.”

After election officials certify the votes, federal law mandates that a state executive, usually the Governor, approves the slate of electors for the winning candidate. If states complete this process before that Dec. 8 safe harbor deadline, they are virtually guaranteed Congress will accept that slate of electors when the body convenes on Jan. 6 to confirm the results.

Georgia is certified. Michigan is next. And that will be that even as Giuliani and Team Trump pressure legislators and election officials in Michigan and Pennsylvania.

Michigan Certification Monday

The Michigan State Board Meets Monday to Certify Election Results.

The role of the board is very narrow and limited. It is to canvass and certify election results. Michigan election law experts told reporters on a press call Friday that the language of the law, which states that the board "shall canvass the returns," is key to understanding the requirements of the board.

"That's a mandatory requirement," John Pirich, a former assistant attorney general to the state of Michigan and current law professor at Michigan State University, said when explaining the laws that govern the board.

"The Michigan Supreme Court has been very clear that 'shall' means 'shall.' It's mandatory. It's ministerial. They have no choice," said Mark Brewer, the longest serving chair of the Michigan Democratic Party and an attorney at the lawfirm Goodman Acker.

The board cannot ask for an audit prior to certification, according to Michigan law.

If the board becomes locked in a 2-2 partisan deadlock, like what initially happened with the Wayne County Board of Canvassers on Tuesday, two parallel processes can occur.

Liedel said the court has proceeded with contempt proceedings in the past for members of the board failing to certify and that board members refusing to certify could be charged with a misdemeanor or willful neglect of duty. If the issue is not resolved by the Court of Appeals it would go to the Michigan Supreme Court, but Michigan election lawyers agreed Friday that it going to that level is unlikely.

At the same time, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a Democrat, has the power to remove and replace any board member, according to Michigan law, and can act without waiting for a court or anyone else. 

Can the legislature get involved and appoint their own electors?

The short answer, according to Michigan election experts, is no.

Even if the State Board of Canvassers refuses to certify results and the issue goes to the courts and Whitmer potentially steps in, Michigan election lawyers explained that the legislature cannot try to appoint their own electors.

"You can look through the entire Michigan election code that was written by the legislature and signed by governors of both parties. There is no role for the legislature in this process," Brewer said.

Michigan will certify on Monday. That's the proper conclusion. And Whitmer can force it if necessary. 

Popular Delusion

Contrary to popular delusion, the Supreme Court is not going to go against state certifications. 

This is rapidly winding up. 

Team Trump has lost every battle and it is highly doubtful the Supreme Court gets involved in any significant way. 

Mish

Comments (92)
No. 1-19
Realist
Realist

Trump saw two of his heroes, Putin and Xi, change the rules in their countries, so they could remain leaders for life. He is trying to do the same thing in the US. As long as he is President, he is virtually immune to being charged with a crime, and he has already shown he can control his own party to prevent impeachment. Unfortunately for him, he is about to shown the door and his legal problems will be starting. I guess that’s why he is appealing for money from his supporters in order to cover his legal expenses. And they are dumb enough to send it to him.

Realist
Realist

I miss the edit feature.

Webej
Webej

» great acts of collective faith «

In other countries they use verification instead.

–Who thinks using a float instead of a dword to keep track of votes is good practice?
–Who can think of good reasons in this day and age to throw away the paper trail instead of marking it with hashed codes and scanning it so you can essentially repeat the process, kind of like banks would do to ascertain what is going in and out of accounts?

Doug78
Doug78

What I am worrying about is whether these extraordinary voting measures put in because of the pandemic will turn out to be permanent. May I point out that most of these measures are not permitted in any other democracy even during the pandemic.

Sechel
Sechel

If the election board had not voted to certify they would have been compelled to do so by a court mandamus. The state legislators have to likewise sign off as a matter of law. It was never optional. This is something poorly understood by many

Sechel
Sechel

Rudy , powell going on tv was a freaking disaster. The campaign and regular lawyers all distanced from it. Rather than signaling new strategy it signaled the end

Sechel
Sechel

Trump calling and summoning legislators and election officials has to be the most brazen and stupid of all strategies Trump has done this election. It wreaks of illegality. And even if as President he's above the law these others are not. It's no accident that all of Trump's regular lawyers refused to participate. Jenna Ellis, Sidney Powell , Ruy Giuliani and the other lawyers involved in this freak show need to be disbarred.

Sechel
Sechel

Accepting the results of a disappointing election is a key part of Democracy. Donald Trump doesn't understand that so Republicans must.

Sechel
Sechel

This site is like a 1950' typewriter. One shot. You don't even get a bottle of white-out. This is downright embarrassing.

Realist
Realist

Even Kemp and Raffensperger certified Georgia’s results. As Raffensperger said “numbers don’t lie”. That’s a pretty big admission from a guy who spends a lot of his time suppressing voters to give his side a better chance to win. Funny how Republicans in Georgia want him to resign now because he didn’t manage to suppress enough votes to guarantee a Republican win. They turn on their own so quickly.

Greenmountain
Greenmountain

The heros are the Republicans standing up to this pressure. And it is kind of funny (actually really sad) that it is not happening in Washington, but in the states. Thank you Secretary Raffensperger and Michigan leaders for respecting the process and standing up for it.

Sechel
Sechel

Why Trump was always going to fail in Michigan

Because the President almost succeeded in getting the two Republicans on the Wayne County board to not certify many wonder whether he might manage to get the Republican members o the state canvassing board to reuse to certify. The Biden team and Michigan voters would likely turn to Federal or State courts. A court would likely issue a Writ of Mandamus because the board's duty is clear and unequivocal once it receive the certified vote totals from the counties. Presidential pardons do not apply to state crimes. The governor has the power to remove or suspend from office a canvassing board member for gross neglect of duty or other misfeasance or malfeasance.

PecuniaNonOlet
PecuniaNonOlet

As I understand it, GOP clowns are terrified of Trump’s “base” if they speak up they will be voted out but why? At least 4 to 6 million of that Trump base (boomers) will be dead in four years, half that for the next mid term election and that is if covid doesnt double or triple those death numbers.

This was it for republicans, unless the party changes somehow to attract more people in, it is heading toward extinction. Clearly, making it easier to vote boosted dem votes significantly far more than Republican votes and that is what trump feared all along.

Rusty Nail
Rusty Nail

If Trump succeeds in convincing his most base supporters that voting is elections isn't even worth it, he may end up doing us a favor.

Johnson1
Johnson1

Realist is a Debi Downer. LOL

Johnson1
Johnson1

The next 4 years could be as entertaining as the last 4 years. I work with some people who grew up in Cuba. They love America. Some citizens forget how great America is compared to other countries.


Newly elected Republican congresswoman Nicole Malliotakis tweeted that a new “anti-socialist squad” is forming in response to the liberal representatives that currently make up a group known as the “Squad.”

An anti-socialist squad is forming…,” Malliotakis, who defeated incumbent Democratic Rep. Max Rose this week to represent New York’s 11th Congressional District.

Malliotakis was responding to a tweet from media strategist Gabriella Hoffman pointing out that two Republicans who “grew up” under socialism were just elected to Congress, and two children of Cuban immigrants, Malliotakis being one of them, were elected as well.

The Squad, which consists of Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar, has pushed for radical changes, including defunding police departments, disbanding Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and a Green New Deal, which drew the ire of centrist Democrats following last week’s national election where Democrats lost at least 10 seats with votes still being counted.

numike
numike

what does Mish drive? Utah Bill Will Legalize Drivers Running Over Street Protesters
Guess which party wants to make it okay to run over a protestor if you're "in fear of your safety" while inside your car.

Sechel
Sechel

“This claim, like Frankenstein’s Monster, has been haphazardly stitched together from two distinct theories in an attempt to avoid controlling precedent,” Brann wrote.

Sechel
Sechel

Not so quick. its clear over the weekend Trump , the GOP and Shirkey have plotted. It's quite probable Michigan's votes will not be certified Monday. The plot will fail but we will have more drama. Shirkey tweeted he won't be intimidated but he seemed to suggest he was talking to Democrats.


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