From our correspondent in the United States,
Days are alike for Donald Trump. After Michigan and Pennsylvania, it was in Arizona that his lawyers tried to convince a circumspect judge on Thursday that the US presidential election of November 3 had been marred by “irregularities”. Disowned by federal and local authorities, according to which there is “no evidence” of massive fraud, the American president persists and refuses to recognize the victory of Joe Biden. But it would need an improbable combination of circumstances, in at least three states, to reverse the situation.
- Where are the appeals filed by Donald Trump?
In one week, Donald Trump filed about twenty appeals, mainly in six states won – or pending – by Joe Biden: Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia, Nevada and Arizona. Last week, the actions aimed at interrupting the account in three states were dismissed by the courts. And if Donald Trump publicly denounces “massive fraud”, his lawyers were forced to admit in Pennsylvania and Arizona, Wednesday and Thursday, that they had no proof.
– The judge in Pennsylvania: “Are you claiming that there is fraud on these 592 ballots?”
– Trump’s lawyer: “Not to my knowledge, no” https://t.co/FaFE3K941Q
– Philippe Berry (@ptiberry) November 11, 2020
In Arizona on Thursday, witnesses who said their vote had not been counted admitted they were “not sure”. The dead who would have voted in Pennsylvania and Michigan? Essentially, they are homonyms or dates of birth poorly transcribed by scanners. In Nevada, the so-called bogus addresses relate to military personnel based overseas or who have changed base. And in Pennsylvania, the Post Office employee who had signed an affidavit claiming his superiors had changed the stamp of late ballots recanted.
On Thursday, the US president changed his approach. He accused Dominion Voting Systems software, which powers voting machines in 28 states, of “wiping out 2.7 million pro-Trump votes in the country.” The cybersecurity and infrastructure security agency (CISA), which reports to the Ministry of Homeland Security, immediately denied, writing: “There is no evidence of a voting system having erased, lost or changed ballots. , or having been hacked in any way. “
- An impossible mission for Donald Trump?
Mathematically, the situation is hopeless for the American president. In Georgia, where Joe Biden has a 14,000-vote lead, a manual recount began on Thursday. In Wisconsin, where Donald Trump is 20,000 votes behind, the US president said he was ready to pay the $ 3 million needed to request a recount. But in the past, such checks have only changed a few hundred votes at most. And that would not be enough for Donald Trump. He would also need Pennsylvania, where Joe Biden is expected to finish 100,000 votes ahead, or Nevada and Wisconsin. Even the former eminence grise of George W. Bush, Karl Rove, is adamant, in a column published in the Wall Street Journal : “The results of the election will not be reversed”.
- A last stand or a stroke of poker?
“Donald Trump’s actions are more desperate acts than meritorious legal remedies”, analysis for 20 Minutes lawyer Mark Trachtenberg. According to him, even intervention by the Supreme Court to overturn the postal votes received after the election in Pennsylvania would not be sufficient given Joe Biden’s lead. Behind the scenes, many close to Donald Trump assure in the American media that he seeks above all to save face for his supporters – or that he maintains the controversy to prepare the launch of a conservative television channel competing with Fox News .
There remains the nuclear option: to try to bypass the verdict of the ballot box at the level of the electoral college, which is due to meet on December 14. The results must in fact be certified beforehand by each State. Georgia has until November 20, Pennsylvania until 23, Arizona until December 3. By playing for time in court, Donald Trump could, in theory, derail this process. In this scenario, which is debated by jurists, the Republican elected officials, who are in power in Pennsylvania, could attempt to send a delegation of pro-Trump rebel large voters in place of the Democratic popular vote-based list – 32 States prohibit it, but Pennsylvania does not. And the American president would need voters from two or three other states.
The general opinion is that we probably won’t go that far. Donald Trump could throw in the towel as early as next week if the recount in Georgia, which must be completed by November 20, confirms Joe Biden’s victory. Fox News consultant Geraldo Rivera, close to the American president, sent him this message on Wednesday: “You came very close. The time has come to bow out with grace and dignity. “