President Donald Trump is still planning legal challenges to the results in some key states as Joe Biden has been declared president-elect.
Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani told Fox News that it would be wrong for the president to concede because: “There is strong evidence that this was an election that in at least three or four states, and possibly 10, it was stolen.”
The Trump campaign is yet to provide this “strong evidence” but says it plans to lodge lawsuits in several key states on November 9.
A lawsuit was filed in Georgia’s Chatham County to pause the count, alleging problems with ballot processing.
Georgia Republican chairman David Shafer tweeted that party observers saw a woman “mix over 50 ballots into the stack of uncounted absentee ballots”.
On November 5, a judge dismissed this lawsuit, saying there was “no evidence” of improper ballot mixing.
Donald Trump won the state in 2016 by his slimmest margin – just over 10,700 votes – and Joe Biden has been projected as the winner here in 2020.
On November 4, the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit to stop the count over claims of a lack of access to observe the process.
A judge dismissed the lawsuit, saying there was insufficient evidence that oversight procedures weren’t being followed.
Rudy Giuliani says further lawsuits will be filed over a lack of access for poll watchers in the state.
Poll watchers are people who observe the counting of votes, with the aim of ensuring transparency. They are allowed in most states as long as they are registered before Election Day.
In some areas this year, there were restrictions put in place before Election Day, in part due to coronavirus pandemic. There are also capacity limits set to avoid intimidation.
A 20-foot perimeter was set in the Philadelphia counting facility but this was challenged and a court ruling on November 5 said it should be reduced to six feet – as long as poll watchers adhered to Covid-19 protocols.
The Trump campaign has filed a federal lawsuit accusing election officials of violating the judge’s order.
Rudy Giuliani said: “Even when a court order was obtained to allow the Republican inspectors to get six feet closer, they moved the people counting the ballots six further feet away.”
However, the election officials insist they behaved properly.
On November 5, Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar said: “Every candidate and every political party is allowed to have an authorized representative in the room observing the process. Some jurisdictions including Philly are also live streaming, so you can literally watch their counting process.”
Another ongoing case disputes how long voters should be able to provide proof of identification if it’s missing or unclear on their postal ballots. Voters are currently allowed to fix their ballots up to November 12, but the Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit seeking to reduce this deadline to November 9.
The legal challenge in Pennsylvania also centers on the state’s decision to count ballots that are postmarked by Election Day but arrive up to three days later. Republicans are seeking an appeal.
On November 7, the Trump campaign filed a lawsuit in Arizona, claiming some legal votes were rejected.
The case cites declarations by some poll watchers and two voters who claim they had problems with voting machines.
The lawsuit is under review, but Arizona’s Secretary of State said it was “grasping at straws”.
The Trump campaign has said it will request a recount in the state “based on abnormalities seen” on Election Day, although this wouldn’t require a lawsuit.
It’s unclear when this recount would take place, since typically these don’t happen until after officials finish reviewing the votes.
Wisconsin’s deadline for this part of the process is November 17.
Columbia University Law School professor Richard Briffault says there was a recount in Wisconsin in 2016 as well, and it “changed about a hundred votes”.
An electronic voting machine in Pennsylvania has been removed from service after it changed votes for Barack Obama into those for Mitt Romney.
An 18-second clip posted onto YouTube shows a voter’s finger repeatedly pressing the button for Barack Obama, but the check mark instead comes up next to Mitt Romney’s name.
This is the latest in a flurry of voting glitches across the country today from West Palm Beach in Florida where ballot counting machines broke down, to vast swathes of New Jersey where text alert systems for residents sent them to the wrong polling stations.
In comments attached to the clip, the anonymous user named “centralpavote” said that “all the other buttons worked fine” and asked voters either side if they were experiencing similar problems – which they denied.
NBC News has reported that since the clip was posted to Reddit this morning, it spread across the Internet and the offending machine has been retired from service.
The video which was filmed on the YouTube users Android phone shows the potentially serious malfunction affect only a vote for the incumbent president.
A vote for any other of the candidates for the presidency and vice presidency resulted in a successful choice – it was only a vote for Barack Obama that caused the machine to change to Mitt Romney.
An electronic voting machine in Pennsylvania has been removed from service after it changed votes for Barack Obama into those for Mitt Romney
“I initially selected Obama but Romney was highlighted,” said “centralpavote” on the introduction to his video on YouTube.
“I assumed it was being picky so I deselected Romney and tried Obama again, this time more carefully, and still got Romney.
“Being a software developer, I immediately went into troubleshoot mode.
“I first thought the calibration was off and tried selecting Jill Stein to actually highlight Obama. Nope. Jill Stein was selected just fine.
“Next I deselected her and started at the top of Romney’s name and started tapping very closely together to find the <<active areas>>.
“From the top of Romney’s button down to the bottom of the black checkbox beside Obama’s name was all active for Romney.
“From the bottom of that same checkbox to the bottom of the Obama button (basically a small white sliver) is what let me choose Obama.
“Stein’s button was fine. All other buttons worked fine.”
The voter reported the problem to an electoral official who declared it a non issue.
“I then called over a volunteer to have a look at it,” said “centralpavote”.
“She him hawed (sic) for a bit then calmly said <<It’s nothing to worry about, everything will be OK>>. and went back to what she was doing.
“I then recorded this video.”
However, far from evidence of electoral fraud, experts have weighed in with the theory that this is a calibration problem specific to the machine.
“It’s a concern but not because of fraud… that’s an obviously miscalibrated iVotronic (ES&S) voting machine,” said Jospeh Lorenzo Hall, Senior Staff Technologist at the Center for Democracy & Technology to Gawker.
“We would recommend that poll workers would recalibrate the machine and everything would be fine.
“Also, with some models of voting system if you place a thumb on accident while resting on the machine it can <<bias>> the calibration of the touchscreen up towards the errant thumb.
“That could be happening to, if it’s only for this one voter.”
Further controversy over voting continued at a polling place in a Philadelphia school where workers ignored a judge’s order to cover a mural of President Barack Obama “in its entirety”.
The art work which is positioned behind voting machines contains the words “change!” and “hope” together with a quote from the president and a painting of him.
However, electoral poll workers only covered up the mural with three pieces of paper – leaving the Obama logo and quote from the serving president in full view of all prospective voters.
Seeing an attempt to influence the votes of those attending the polling place in Ward 35, Republicans were outraged.
Gabrielle Marvelli, a Pennsylvania math teacher admitted to having sex with a 17-year-old student earlier this year on the same day as his senior prom.
Gabrielle Marvelli pleaded guilty to the corruption of a minor after she had sex with a male student.
The 39-year-old math teacher was shaking and crying quietly as she admitted she had sex with one of her former students during a hearing yesterday.
By admitting guilt, Gabrielle Marvelli faces a maximum sentence of 9 months, though she may be placed in either a county jail rather than a state prison, or even in a jail’s work-release program.
Gabrielle Marvelli was arrested in June, just under a month after going to the Econo Lodge, an Allentown, Pennsylvania motel, at 3:20 a.m. for the early morning tryst.
Gabrielle Marvelli, a Pennsylvania math teacher admitted to having sex with a 17-year-old student earlier this year on the same day as his senior prom
The unidentified male student was one week shy of his 18th birthday at the time of their romp. Gabrielle Marvelli claimed that the student said he was 18 at the time, though the boy’s mother says otherwise.
The police were contacted shortly after the encounter took place on Memorial Day weekend in late May and began an investigation into Gabrielle Marvelli’s actions.
Gabrielle Marvelli, a married and the mother of a young daughter, was suspended from her job at the Allen High School after news of the encounter broke.
Her role as a teacher in the young man’s school made her sentencing a moral issue for county officials.
“I have chosen to approve this charge because teachers must be held to a high standard and, stating the obvious, should not enlist their students to engage in sexual relations,” district attorney Jim Martin said at the time of her arrest.
Those sentiments were echoed by Tim Eller, spokesman for the state Department of Education said: “When it comes to teachers there’s no delineation between a student of adult age or child. Regardless of age, the department does not look favourably upon it.”
Under Pennsylvania criminal law, the charge of corruption of minors can be applied to adults who commit various offences, including sexual abuse, against anyone under age 18.
Gabrielle Marvelli was released on $10,000 bail, and said Tuesday that though she had been suspended from her teaching position, she now works two jobs. She did not say what those jobs were.
The next step in the process is Gabrielle Marvelli’s sentencing hearing which is scheduled to take place on December 20.
Hurricane Irene hit Atlantic beach of North Carolina and one man was killed outside his home this morning.
The man was hit by a tree limb that blew down while he was walking around his house this morning in a rural area of Nash County, where winds were roaring at more than 60 mph, county Emergency Management Director Brian Brantley told the Associated Press.
Hurricane Irene hit Atlantic Beach, Cape Fear and the Outer Banks of North Carolina with Category 1 winds and rain and made landfall in Nags Head, North Carolina.
Hurricane Irene hit Atlantic Beach, Cape Fear and the Outer Banks of North Carolina with Category 1 winds and rain and made landfall in Nags Head
The center of hurricane hit the coast of North Carolina near Cape Lookout with Category 1-force winds of 85 mph.
Hurricane warnings for the next 48 hours have been issued for North Carolina, Virginia, Washington, D.C., Maryland, Delaware, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, coastal Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
Until now, eastern North Carolina has already seen three tornadoes in the past few days, and the majority of the state and areas of Maryland and Virginia are under tornado watches through Sunday.
Stacy town, on the coast of North Carolina, is seeing 93 mph wind gusts this morning.
The far end of the fishing pier in Atlantic Beach, North Carolina collapsed overnight.
The 100-foot long pier is still standing, but its end has disappeared into the ocean.
About 200,000 homes in North Carolina are experiencing power outages, according to Power Energy.
Winds up to 85 mph have ripped power lines from their poles, causing many of the shortages.
“Our crews are restoring service as quickly as possible, where it is safe to do so,” Power Energy tweeted.
The hardest hit areas were Wilmington and Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.
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