Surreal Alternate Reality

Please note that Pennsylvania issues Blistering Rebuke of Texas' lawsuit seeking to invalidate millions of votes.

Statements by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro

  1. "Texas seeks to invalidate elections in four states for yielding results with which it disagrees. Its request for this Court to exercise its original jurisdiction and then anoint Texas's preferred candidate for President is legally indefensible and is an affront to principles of constitutional democracy." 
  2. The lawsuit, rests on a "surreal alternate reality."
  3. "Texas's effort to get this Court to pick the next President has no basis in law or fact. The Court should not abide this seditious abuse of the judicial process, and should send a clear and unmistakable signal that such abuse must never be replicated."
  4. "Nothing in the text, history, or structure of the Constitution supports Texas's view that it can dictate the manner in which four sister States run their elections, and Texas suffered no harm because it dislikes the results in those elections." 

Correct on All Four

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro is clearly correct on all four counts.

"This case is hopeless," said SCOTUSblog publisher Tom Goldstein, who argues frequently before the court.

Hopeless Case

Also consider Big Problems with Texas' Bid to Overturn Biden's Win at the Supreme Court

The lawsuit, which Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed Monday, calls on the court to delay the electoral vote in the four targeted states, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, to allow investigations of voting issues to continue. That would be unconstitutional, said Edward Foley of the Moritz College of Law at Ohio State University.

The second hurdle is that Texas has no legal right to claim that officials elsewhere didn't follow the rules set by their own legislatures. The United States doesn't have a national election for president. It has a series of state elections, and one state has no legal standing to challenge how another state conducts its elections any more than Texas could challenge how Georgia elects its senators, legal experts said.

The court filings also appear to have been prepared in haste. For example, the lawsuit says the four states that Texas wants to sue have a total of 72 electoral votes. The total is actually 62.

Officials from both parties in the states named in the lawsuit ripped Paxton's challenge as "a publicity stunt" loaded with "false and irresponsible" allegations.

False and Irresponsible Allegations

Let's dive into the Texas Filing for absurd charges. 

Expert analysis using a commonly  accepted statistical test further raises serious  questions as to the integrity of this election. 

The probability of former Vice President  Biden winning the popular vote in the four Defendant States—Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin—independently given President Trump’s early lead in those States as of 3 a.m. on November 4, 2020, is less than one in a quadrillion, or 1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000. 

The same less than one in a quadrillion statistical improbability of Mr. Biden winning the popular vote in the four Defendant States—Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin— independently exists when Mr. Biden’s performance in each of those Defendant States is compared to former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s performance in the 2016 general election and President Trump’s performance in the 2016 and 2020 general elections. 

Statistical Madness

Robert Madsen on American Thinker takes a deep dive into statistical madness in A Summary of the Texas Election Lawsuit.

The Texas lawsuit claims the odds of Biden overcoming Trump’s lead and winning any of the states after the point indicated was one in a quadrillion. And therefore, the odds of winning all four was one in a quadrillion to the fourth power. The lawsuit did not provide information on how that number was determined. This may seem an exaggerated to some. It is enough to state that the odds of winning any one of the states was highly unlikely and the odds of winning all four were extremely unlikely. For example, if the odds of winning any one of the states was numerically much less extreme but still highly unlikely, say something like one in twenty, then the odds of doing that in all four states would be 1 in 160,000. Twenty beans in a jar: 19 white and 1 black. Reach in without looking and be lucky enough to pull out the one black bean. Chances of doing that again is 1 in 400. Clearly indicative of cheating if someone claims to have done that four times in a row. As I said the statistical analysis behind the claim of odds of 1 in a 1,000,000,000,000 are not given so I cannot speak to that. But even if the odds were orders of magnitude better than that, they were still astronomically small. At any rate, the merits of the lawsuit do not depend on any certain level of odds of Biden overcoming a lead that had been established by 3:00 A.M. the day after election .

Trump Bets on Longshot Texas Election Lawsuit

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The Wall Street Journal also shreds the lawsuit in Trump Bets on Longshot Texas Election Lawsuit

Mr. Trump called the lawsuit “the big one” in a tweet Wednesday. “The Supreme Court has a chance to save our Country from the greatest Election abuse in the history of the United States,” the president tweeted Thursday.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel called the Texas lawsuit “a publicity stunt.” Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul said the suit was “genuinely embarrassing.” Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro called the allegations “meritless” and “beyond reckless.”

A group of Republican former officials filed a friend of the court brief calling Texas’s claim “a mockery of federalism and separation of powers. It would violate the most fundamental constitutional principles for this Court to serve as the trial court for presidential election disputes,” they argued. Signers included a foremost Supreme Court advocate, Carter Phillips, along with former New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, former Missouri Sen. John Danforth and Lowell Weicker, a former Connecticut governor, senator and congressman.

The only question before the Supreme Court is whether Texas has permission to file its case. Most cases that come before the justices have first gone through lower courts, but the Constitution authorizes states to file suits directly with the Supreme Court. The court’s practice, however, has been to accept such cases only when they involve disputes that cannot first be heard elsewhere.

The Texas suit is the brashest attempt yet by GOP officials to invalidate the election, and constitutional scholars said they doubt the Supreme Court will entertain a suit proposing to disenfranchise millions of voters.

If Texas gets its way, the Supreme Court will basically be throwing out a presidential election despite no evidence of fraud or that the results aren’t accurate,” said University of Texas law professor Steve Vladek, calling the lawsuit one of the most bizarre court filings of the 2020 election cycle. “It’s crazy.

Texas rests much of its argument on a disputed statistical analysis by economist Charles Ciccetti, who claims Mr. Biden’s odds of winning the four defendant states were “1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000,” given that Mr. Trump carried them in his 2016 race against Hillary Clinton.

Laughable Claims

It never helps your case when you make laughable, easily-disproved, claims. 

  • It was well understood, nearly universally, that Trump's initial lead was based on election day votes. 
  • It was also well understood that mail in votes would be counted last.
  • Finally, it was well understood that mail in votes were overwhelmingly  Democratic in nature.

All of those points were made well in advance of the counting. 

I commented on that on August 30 in On Election Night, We Might Not Know Who Won

Expect Very Skewed Election Night Reporting

Election Night Scorecard

On October 31, I gave more detailed expectations in Election Night Scorecard: Here's What to Watch

Michigan Results: It’s going to take a few days. The earliest absentee ballots can be processed is Nov. 2, which likely does not leave enough time to count them all by election night. The secretary of state estimates that it could take until Friday, Nov. 6, for all ballots to be counted and a winner to be declared. 

Michigan Shifts: Margins will probably shift toward Democrats in the days after Nov. 3 as mail votes are added to the results.

Pennsylvania Results: It’ll be slow going. Although around half of Pennsylvanians are expected to vote absentee, those ballots can’t start being processed until 7 a.m. on Nov. 3. Simply put, that’s not enough time for many counties to count them all before the day is over. (For example, Bucks County plans to count ballots 24 hours a day and still doesn’t expect to be done until the end of the week.) Overall, election officials estimate that “the overwhelming majority” of votes will be counted by Friday. That said, don’t rule out an even longer wait. During the June primary, about half of counties were still counting a week after the election. No matter what, we’ll definitely know the outcome by Nov. 23 — the deadline for counties to stop counting.

Pennsylvania Shifts: Election-night results are expected to be disproportionately made up of Election Day votes, which will probably skew Republican. Then, as absentee ballots are counted in the ensuing days, the state will probably experience a blue shift.

Wisconsin Results: It may take all night, but we should have all results by Wednesday morning. Despite not being able to process absentee ballots until Election Day (which originally stoked fears of a delayed count), many counties say they will be able to count everything on election night: Washington County plans to have all results by 10:30 p.m. Eastern; Kenosha, Sheboygan and Fond du Lac by 1 a.m. Eastern; Waukesha County by 4 a.m. Eastern; and Milwaukee County sometime between 4 and 7 a.m. Eastern. The governor has predicted that we will know the outcome of the election “hopefully that night and maybe at the latest the very next day.”

Wisconsin Shifts: Most municipalities count absentee and Election Day votes together, but others — including Milwaukee — count them separately and may release absentee votes all at once toward the end of the night, which could nudge races toward Democrats.

Contrary to the laughable claim of 1 in a quadrillion, the late shits toward Democrats was called well in advance then repeated. 

Had I seen that preposterous claim, I would have wanted to file my own friend of the court briefing.

Morally and Ethically Bankrupt

John Kasich is a former Republican governor of Ohio.

An Attorney General With Principles

If you are worried the Supreme Court will decide for Trump, you should instead be shaking your head at how preposterous this setup is and how laughable the claims are.

Mish