President Donald Trump’s campaign manager announced that the Republican candidate for president would be suing the state of Michigan to stop counting votes from the presidential election that took place on Tuesday.
Bill Stepien, the head of Trump’s campaign, demanded that members of the president’s campaign team be allowed to observe the tabulation process of votes that were being counted. The votes are being counted later than usual due to the large number of absentee ballots.
“We have filed suit today in the Michigan Court of Claims to halt counting until meaningful access has been granted,” Stepien said in a statement. “We also demand to review those ballots which were opened and counted while we did not have meaningful access. President Trump is committed to ensuring that all legal votes are counted in Michigan and everywhere else.”
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The state is seen as essential for Trump if he is to win reelection, but currently, his challenger, Democratic candidate for president Joe Biden, is in the lead. With 95 percent of all votes in the state counted, Biden is ahead of Trump by about 0.9 percent, or around 45,000 votes.
The president had been ahead of Biden late into Tuesday evening, but that lead disappeared as votes from heavily Democratic areas, such as Wayne County (which includes Detroit) started to get counted.
More legal action was announced by the Trump campaign later on Wednesday afternoon. According to CNN correspondent Abby D. Phillip, the campaign was also seeking to stop votes from being counted in Pennsylvania where Trump currently holds the lead..
“Trump campaign just announced that they are seeking to stop ballot COUNTING in a second state: now Pennsylvania,” Phillip tweeted out.
While the Trump campaign has signaled it wants vote counting to stop in Michigan and Pennsylvania, it has said it will demand a recount of votes in neighboring Wisconsin, which had been called for Biden earlier in the day. The former vice president is reportedly ahead of Trump in the Badger State by a margin that is greater than 20,000 votes.
As Trump’s campaign manager is making strategic moves in states Trump has either already lost or which appear as though he may lose, the president himself has been busy on social media, making a number of disreputable claims regarding vote counting in those states.
One tweet that Trump issued out resulted in Twitter placing a disclaimer, noting that the content within it was “disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.”
“They are working hard to make up 500,000 vote advantage in Pennsylvania disappear — ASAP. Likewise, Michigan and others!” Trump said in that tweet. Pennsylvania is another state where Trump currently has a lead, but a number of votes from Democratic areas that have yet to be counted may flip the state to Biden.
“They are finding Biden votes all over the place — in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. So bad for our Country!” Trump said in a different tweet.
In fact, Trump’s comments are false — votes aren’t being “found” in any of those places. Rather, ballots that had been submitted in a timely manner are finally being counted, as they are legally meant to be included in the final vote total.