For a man obsessed with winning, Donald Trump is losing a lot.
In the month since the election, the president and his legal team have come no closer in their frantic efforts to overturn the result, notching up dozens of losses in courts across the country, with more rolling in by the day.
According to an Associated Press tally of roughly 50 cases brought by Trump’s campaign and his allies, more than 30 have been rejected or dropped, and about a dozen are awaiting action.
The advocacy group Democracy Docket put Trump’s losses even higher, tweeting on Friday that Trump’s team had lost 46 post-election lawsuits following several fresh losses in several states on Friday.
Trump has notched just one small victory, a case challenging a decision to move the deadline to provide missing proof of identification for certain absentee ballots and mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania.
Five more losses came on Friday. The Trump campaign lost its bid to overturn the results of the election in Nevada and a Michigan appeals court rejected a case from his campaign. The Minnesota supreme court dismissed a challenge brought by GOP lawmakers. And in Arizona, a judge threw out a bid to undo Biden’s victory there, concluding that the state’s Republican party chairwoman failed to prove fraud or misconduct and that the evidence presented at trial wouldn’t reverse Trump’s loss. The Wisconsin supreme court also declined to hear a lawsuit brought by a conservative group over Trump’s loss.
Trump’s latest failings came as California certified Joe Biden as the official winner in the state, officially handing him the electoral college majority needed to win the White House. Secretary of State Alex Padilla’s formal approval of the state’s 55 pledged electors brought Biden’s tally so far to 279, according to a count by the Associated Press – just over the 270 threshold needed for victory.
The Republican president and his allies continue to mount new cases, recycling the same baseless claims, even after Trump’s own attorney general, William Barr, declared this week that the justice department had uncovered no widespread fraud.
“This will continue to be a losing strategy, and in a way it’s even bad for him: he gets to re-lose the election numerous times,“ said Kent Greenfield, a professor at Boston College Law School. “The depths of his petulance and narcissism continue to surprise me.”
Trump has refused to admit he lost and this week posted a 46-minute speech to Facebook filled with conspiracy theories, misstatements and vows to keep up his fight to subvert the election.
Judges in battleground states have repeatedly swatted down legal challenges brought by the president and his allies. Trump’s legal team has vowed to take one Pennsylvania case to the US supreme court even though it was rejected in a scathing ruling by a federal judge, as well as an appeals court.
After recently being kicked off Trump’s legal team, the conservative attorney Sidney Powell filed new lawsuits in Arizona and Wisconsin this week riddled with errors and wild conspiracy claims about election rigging. One of the plaintiffs named in the Wisconsin case said he never agreed to participate in the case and found out through social media that he had been included.
In his video posted Wednesday, Trump falsely claimed there were facts and evidence of a mass conspiracy created by Democrats to steal the election, a similar argument made by his lawyer Rudy Giuliani and others before judges, which have been largely unsuccessful.
Most of their claims are rooted in conspiracy theories about voting machines, as well as testimony from partisan poll watchers who claimed they didn’t get close enough to see ballots being tallied because of Covid safety precautions.
“No, I didn’t hear any facts or evidence,“ tweeted the Pennsylvania attorney general, Josh Shapiro, a Democrat, after watching the video Wednesday night. “What I did hear was a sad Facebook rant from a man who lost an election.”