Trump campaign lawyers Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell, and Jenna Ellis gave a blockbuster press conference on Thursday in which they ran down the legal case for the president’s repeated claim that he won the 2020 presidential election. Giuliani insisted that the evidence the campaign has collected suggests that “more than double” the margin of votes required to flip the election in six swing states are provably illegal, meaning Trump will have won them when only legal votes are counted. Ellis insisted that the legal challenges are not aimed at reversing the preliminary election results, however, but at restoring election integrity.
“In the states that we have indicated in red, Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Nevada, and Arizona, we more than double the number of votes needed to overturn the election in terms of provable, illegal ballots,” Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, said.
Giuliani insisted that the amount of evidence Team Trump has compiled suggests that Democrats cooked up a voter fraud scheme across the country.
“I think the logical conclusion is this is a common plan, a common scheme, that comes right directly from the Democrat Party and it comes from the candidate. Clearly, that’s the reason why Hillary Clinton said, ‘Don’t concede even if you’re losing.’ That’s the reason, we had a Freudian slip by the candidate and he said he had the best ‘voter fraud’ team in the country. That’s the reason why he probably didn’t have to go out and campaign. He had to have known what they were going to do. This had to be planned in advance,” the former mayor said.
Ellis took a more restrained approach. She described the press conference as “basically an opening statement so the American people can understand what the networks have been hiding and what they refuse to cover.”
“Let me be very clear that our objective is to make sure to preserve and protect election integrity. President Trump has been saying from day one, that this is about maintaining free and fair elections in this country. It is not about overturning an outcome,” Ellis argued.
Ellis noted that the campaign is trying its case in a court of law, rather than the court of public opinion. If she had to try the case in the court of public opinion, “I would strike 99% of you from the jury and I would be allowed to, because of the fake news coverage you provide. You’re not unbiased jurors,” she said to the legacy media attendees.
Ellis insisted that the Trump campaign is confident of victory because it has “mulitple pathways” due to the overabundance of evidence. “But this is not about overturning an election on our part. It’s about making sure that we protect and preserve free and fair elections for all future American elections.”
While many legacy media outlets have repeatedly claimed that the Trump campaign does not have evidence of widespread voter fraud, the lawyers insisted that they have hundreds of affidavits in which election workers and voters testified to having witnessed fraudulent practices or practices that enable fraud.
Giuliani read extensively from one such affidavit, that of Jesse Jacob, a City of Detroit employee. “She was assigned to voting duties in September, and she was trained by the City of Detroit and the State of Michigan. She was basically trained to cheat,” he explained.
“She said, ‘I was instructed by my supervisor to adjust the mailing date of these absentee ballot packages to be dated earlier than when they were actually sent in.’ The supervisor made that announcement for all workers to engage in that fraudulent practice. That’s not me saying that. That’s this American citizen saying that under oath,” Giuliani read.
“Then she was instructed ‘by my supervisor not to ask for a driver’s license or any photo ID when a person was trying to vote.’ Don’t ask for identification. Why would you not ask for identification? Because you knew that a lot of people not entitled to vote were going to come in and early vote,” the former mayor added.
She also said, “I observed a large number of people who came to the satellite location to vote in person, but they had already applied for and submitted an absentee ballot.” So, she observed a lot of people voting twice. Again, this is Jesse Jacob, not me. “I was instructed not to invalidate any ballots and not to look for any deficiency in the ballots.” Why would you do that? Because you’re cheating, on purpose cheating, intentionally cheating. You’re cheating as an institution.
…“Don’t look for any deficiencies in the ballot.” “I was instructed not to look at any of the signatures on the absentee ballots.” If she was instructed not to look for any of the signatures on the absentee ballots, why the heck do you sign it in the first place? In order to identify it. She was instructed not to do that because many of the absentee ballots were fraudulent, and they knew that, and they didn’t want to have account of that.
“I’ve never met her, never coached her,” Giuliani insisted. “And I’d like you to note that it’s signed under penalties of perjury. We have a hundred more of these. I can’t show them to you because those people don’t want to be harassed. They don’t want to have their lives torn apart by the goons on the other side.”
The former mayor noted that the campaign has 220 affidavits in the Michigan case, presenting similar types of fraud. He celebrated the fact that Wayne County, Mich., de-certified its election results after Republicans claimed they had been bullied into agreeing to certify them.
Giuliani also insisted that the Trump campaign has evidence that more than makes up for Biden’s 20,000-vote lead in Wisconsin.
“Under the law of the State of Wisconsin, already decided, if there’s no application for an absentee ballot, the absentee ballot is thrown away,” he argued. He said the campaign has evidence that there are 60,000 absentee ballots in Milwaukee County and 40,000 absentee ballots in Madison County where the voters in question did not apply for the ballots.
“You take away any number of those and that 20,000 lead disappears. In other words, if you count the lawful votes, Trump won Wisconsin by a good margin. Indeed, if you count the lawful votes in Pennsylvania, he won it by about 300,000 votes,” Giuliani insisted.
He also announced a “major lawsuit in Georgia” coming on Friday and another likely lawsuit in Arizona.
The allegations Giuliani presented are serious and deserve careful examination. While I am skeptical about the campaign’s grandiose claims, it is important for the campaign to have its day in court.
Many conservatives think of a Biden win as implausible for the wrong reasons. Democrats had long insisted on mail-in voting while Republicans told voters to turn out in-person. This led to a situation where officials counted Election Day ballots before they counted mail-in ballots, so it always made sense that more Biden votes would come in after the Trump votes were counted.
The Trump campaign has to clear many big hurdles in order to prove its case of massive fraud and conservatives should not assume that the campaign will prevail. However, Ellis and Giuliani were right to insist that these affidavits constitute serious evidence of alleged malpractice, and Americans deserve an in-depth investigation into these claims in the interest of election integrity.
Tyler O’Neil is the author of Making Hate Pay: The Corruption of the Southern Poverty Law Center. Follow him on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.