Federal lawsuit tossed, state lawsuit pending to stop certification of votes in Pa.

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Saturday night a federal lawsuit filed by the Trump campaign in hopes to overturn the election was thrown out in Pennsylvania.

But two and a half weeks after election day, legal efforts to stop certification of the election continue.

President-elect Joe Biden currently has an 80,000 vote lead on President Trump in Pa.

While Trump’s lawsuit may have failed, his allies are still trying.

The argument tossed out in federal court was that equal protection under the law was violated when Pennsylvania counties took different approaches to notify voters before the election about technical problems with submitted mail-in ballots.

The judge said he was presented with “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations…unsupported by evidence.”

Hours before the ruling, U.S. Congressman Mike Kelly filed a suit in Commonwealth Court calling Act 77, which allows for mail-in ballots, unconstitutional.

Additionally, he’s asking for the results not to be certified.

“The fact that this had been passed and signed by the governor certainly does not prevent it from being challenged,” said Michael Dimino, law professor at Widener Law Commonwealth Law School.

The Pennsylvania constitution says only four categories of people are entitled to an absentee ballot, including those away for work, people who are disabled, election day workers or because of a religious holiday.

“There wouldn’t be any reason to list those four categories if the legislature could just add more categories or treat the entire electorate as entitled to an absentee ballot,” Dimino said.

“Because Act 77 effectively extends effectively absentee balloting to everybody in the commonwealth, it’s in conflict for that provision of the constitution,” Dimino said.

On Twitter Attorney General Josh Shapiro called the lawsuit “another weak attempt to subvert the will of the people. Desperate, hypocritical, baseless.”

Gov. Tom Wolf’s spokeswoman Lyndsay Kensinger said in a statement, “In a year of crass and partisan litigation, this lawsuit sets a new low bar. To be clear, Congressman Kelly is seeking to disenfranchise the nearly 2.7 million Pennsylvania voters who voted by mail-in ballot in the general election, including over 100,000 of his own constituents.

Pennsylvania had a free, fair, and secure election. Millions of Pennsylvanians followed the rules allowed by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the Supreme Court of the United States, and each voter, regardless of political party, must have their voice heard. These attacks against the core values of Americans are intended to undermine our democracy, and we must reject them.”

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