Two arms of the Republican Party are trying to intervene in a state-level lawsuit filed by Democrats in Minnesota that they say aims to weaken state laws designed to protect electoral integrity.
The original legal complaint in the case, known as Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) v. Simon, was filed Jan. 17 in Ramsey County District Court in Minnesota. The Republican Party of Minnesota and the Republican National Committee filed a motion to intervene in the legal proceeding on March 10.
The legal move is part of a $10 million push by Republicans to combat Democrats current legal stratagem challenging election laws in battleground states important to President Donald Trumps reelection effort.
“The RNC is aggressively fighting back against the Democrats attempts to sue their way to victory in 2020,” said Ronna McDaniel, chairman of the Republican National Committee, as reported by The Washington Examiner.
“Democrats know they cant beat President Trump at the ballot box, so they are trying to use our courts for partisan political gain,” she said.
“These Democrat lawsuits arent about making it easier to vote, but rather are an attempt to score cheap political points while watering down common-sense laws that bring order to our elections process.”
The legal activity in Minnesota comes after Republicans in Michigan, a state Trump narrowly won in 2016, filed to intervene in a lawsuit launched by Priorities USA, a super PAC allied with Democrats, that seeks to strike down state laws Democrats argue create unnecessary obstacles to voting. Republicans claim that ending current Michigan laws preventing paid organizers from driving voters to the polls and assisting voters in submitting absentee ballot applications open the door to electoral fraud.
Both parties are keeping a close eye on Minnesota, traditionally a stronghold for Democrats.
Trump came a lot closer to victory in Minnesota in 2016 than most prognosticators thought possible, losing to Democrat Hillary Clinton by 1.5 percentage points, or 44,765 votes, out of close to 3 million ballots cast. By contrast, in 2012, incumbent Democrat Barack Obama beat Republican Mitt Romney by 7.7 percentage points, or 225,942 votes, out of more than 2.9 million ballots cast.
In the Minnesota litigation, Republicans are trying to protect the states ban on “ballot harvesting” and the states voter protection law.
Ballot harvesting, a pejorative term apparently coined by Republicans, is when organized workers or volunteers collect absentee ballots from voters and deliver those ballots to a polling place. They say the tactic helped Californias Democrats defeat many Republican candidates, including incumbents, turning the Read More – Source