Philadelphia: Trump Campaign Threatens to Sue over Satellite Election Office Access

In this Nov. 8, 2016, file photo, poll watcher Jane Grimes Meneely, right, watches as voters sign in at the Martha O'Bryan Center community building in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey, File)
AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign on Wednesday threatened to sue unless it is granted access to observe activity inside opened satellite election offices in Philadelphia.

The Associated Press reported:

A letter, sent late Tuesday night by a lawyer representing the Trump campaign, insisted the campaign has a legal right to observe the voting process in the heavily Democratic city’s satellite election offices.

“If we have not satisfactorily resolved this matter by tomorrow at 5 p.m., the campaign will seek court intervention,” the lawyer, Linda Kerns, wrote.

Election lawyers say there is no right under Pennsylvania law, even for a certified poll watcher, to observe inside an election office where someone is registering to vote, applying for a mail-in ballot or filling one out.

During Tuesday evening’s presidential debate, President Trump referenced Philadelphia’s satellite voting centers.

“As you know, today there was a big problem. In Philadelphia, they went in to watch. They’re called poll watchers,” the president said. “It’s a very safe, very nice thing. They were thrown out. They aren’t allowed to watch. You know why? Cause bad things happen in Philadelphia.”

Earlier Tuesday, President Trump tweeted about claims about poll watchers being blocked from entering the officers.

“Wow. Won’t let Poll Watchers & Security into Philadelphia Voting Places,” he wrote. “There is only one reason why. Corruption!!! Must have a fair Election.”

Meanwhile, Wednesday, state House Republican lawmakers began advancing a just-introduced resolution to independently set up a committee with subpoena power to investigate how the election is being conducted.

As part of his long-running effort to discredit voting by mail and cast doubt on any election result that goes against him, Trump told a rally at Harrisburg International Airport on Saturday night that the only way he can lose Pennsylvania is if Democrats cheat.

Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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