Trump to Meet With Michigan Republicans in Bid to Overturn Vote
(Bloomberg) -- President Donald Trump quietly invited the Republican leaders of the Michigan legislature to the White House on Friday, according to a person familiar with the matter, as he seeks to erase his defeat in the state’s Nov. 3 election.
Some of the president’s allies have said he should seek to persuade Republican legislatures in several states he’s contesting, including Michigan and Pennsylvania, to overrule voters and give him the states’ Electoral College votes instead of President-elect Joe Biden.
“The entire election, frankly, in all the swing states should be overturned and the legislatures should make sure that the electors are selected for Trump,” Sidney Powell, a lawyer on Trump’s team, said Thursday on the Fox Business network.
It’s legally questionable whether legislatures could even consider the idea after the election has already taken place.
Trump has said little about the strategy himself, but his invitation to the two Michigan lawmakers, Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey and House Speaker Lee Chatfield, suggests he is exploring it. The Detroit News reported the invitation earlier Thursday.
Shirkey and Chatfield have both dismissed the idea of overruling voters.
“That’s not going to happen,” Shirkey told a Michigan news outlet, Michigan Bridge, earlier this week.
Chatfield said in a Nov. 6 tweet that “whoever gets the most votes will win Michigan! Period. End of story.”
Michigan’s Democratic congressional delegation said in a joint statement on Thursday evening that “history will judge” Shirkey and Chatfield “on whether they choose to acknowledge the results of the election and defend our democracy, or simply be loyal to one man.”
Trump trails Biden in Michigan by about 156,000 votes. His campaign legal team, led by Rudy Giuliani, had sought to stop the state from certifying the results of the election, citing irregularities in Detroit, but dropped its lawsuit Thursday morning.
Giuliani claimed in a statement the campaign had already accomplished its goal, after two Republican members of the canvassing board in Wayne County, which includes Detroit, sought to rescind their votes certifying the election results. But Michigan’s secretary of state said they could not rescind their decision and the next step would be for the state canvassing board to certify Michigan’s election results.
Giuliani asserted at a news conference in Washington on Thursday that without Detroit’s votes, Trump would have won the state of Michigan.
©2020 Bloomberg L.P.