Trump Wants Appeals Court to Halt Pennsylvania Certification

President Donald Trump’s campaign on Monday asked a federal appeals court for permission to request an emergency injunction blocking Pennsylvania from certifying the election result while the campaign seeks to revise a lawsuit over mail-in ballots.

The filing in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia signals that Trump hasn’t given up his effort to block Pennsylvania from certifying his election loss, even though the state’s 67 counties are required by law to certify their results by Monday evening.

Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar, a Democrat who is a defendant in the suit, could affirm statewide results swiftly after the counties certify their results.

The request is part of the campaign’s appeal of a Saturday decision by U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann for denying its request to file a second revised complaint in the case. In the same decision, Brann dismissed the campaign’s first amended complaint, saying it was far too short on evidence.

The appeals court earlier granted the campaign’s request for expedited review and gave it a 4 p.m. deadline to file its initial brief in the case.

Trump’s lawyers have repeatedly stated their strategy is to bring an election case before the U.S. Supreme Court, but the campaign’s decision to appeal for the right to file a new complaint rather than reverse dismissal could delay the timetable for getting to the high court. If the appeal is successful, it would allow the campaign to file a revised complaint adding several claims, requiring more filings and a new hearing before Brann.

Brann eviscerated the Trump campaign’s lawsuit in his ruling, calling it a “Frankenstein’s Monster” that had been “haphazardly stitched together” and saying it made “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations.”

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