Milwaukee Asks to Sanction Trump on ‘Baseless’ Election Suit
(Bloomberg) -- Donald Trump and his lawyers should pay more than $65,000 in legal fees to Milwaukee County and face additional sanctions for filing a “baseless” lawsuit trying to overturn the result of the presidential election, Wisconsin’s biggest metropolitan area told a judge.
The former president never had a valid reason to sue to toss out Wisconsin’s 3.3 million votes, a long-shot effort that would have paved the way for the state’s GOP-dominated legislature to appoint a slate of electors more favorable to Trump, the county said in a filing Thursday in federal court in Milwaukee.
“Trump never offered any legal or factual basis for his breathtaking request, and none exists,” the county, a heavily Democratic area in a swing state, said in the filing. “The relief he sought was entirely baseless and amply justifies the imposition of sanctions.”
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers filed a similar request last week seeking $145,000 in legal fees incurred by the state. Trump and his allies sued unsuccessfully more than 60 times as they tried to overturn election results in battleground states like Wisconsin, which narrowly went for Joe Biden. A federal appeals court affirmed the rejection of Trump’s Wisconsin case, and the U.S. Supreme Court denied review.
Also on Thursday, former Trump campaign attorney Sidney Powell asked a judge to deny a similar request for sanctions against her in a separate suit she filed in Wisconsin to overturn the election result. Powell represented a Trump voter in that case, which also failed. The state is seeking $106,000 in legal fees from Powell, saying her case alleging a vast voter-fraud conspiracy involving a complicit voting-machine company, foreign hackers and “communist money” was too far-fetched to justify it being filed.
But Powell, who was ditched by the Trump campaign after going public with the extent of her conspiracy theory, argues the request for fees comes too late and affronts “common sense.”
“Defendant’s motion is, in essence, a request that the Court conduct a review and issue a decision on the merits of Plaintiff’s evidence without trial or evidentiary hearing,” Powell said. “While the case was pending, Defendant aggressively opposed the Court hearing the evidence at all, much less deciding its merits.”
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