Texas sues Georgia to try to overturn election results

The state of Texas sued Georgia and three other states Tuesday in an effort to persuade the U.S. Supreme Court to throw out election results that showed Democrat Joe Biden won the most votes.

The case is a longshot attempt to overturn Georgia’s elections after counts and recounts showed that Biden defeated Trump by about 12,000 votes. Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and Gov. Brian Kemp, both Republicans, certified Georgia’s election results Monday.

The lawsuit by Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton accuses Georgia election officials of illegally changing rules for voter signature verification and early opening of absentee ballot envelopes.

“With all due respect, the Texas attorney general is constitutionally, legally and factually wrong about Georgia,” said Katie Byrd, spokeswoman for Republican Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr.

The court filing takes issue with Georgia’s absentee ballot signature verification process, arguing that a court settlement early this year violated state law. The settlement between Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and the Democratic Party required election workers to consult with two co-workers before rejecting absentee ballots because of potentially mismatched signatures.

The lawsuit also objects to a State Election Board rule that allowed absentee ballots to be opened and scanned two weeks before Election Day. No votes were allowed to be tabulated until polls closed.

“Trust in the integrity of our election processes is sacrosanct and binds our citizenry and the states in this union together. Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin destroyed that trust and compromised the security and integrity of the 2020 election,” Paxton said.

Georgia Deputy Secretary of State Jordan Fuchs said the allegations in the lawsuit “are false and irresponsible.”

“Texas alleges that there are 80,000 forged signatures on absentee ballots in Georgia, but they don’t bring forward a single person who this happened to. That’s because it didn’t happen,” Fuchs said.

Several Georgia state senators expressed support of the Texas lawsuit, saying the election allowed misconduct, fraud and irregularities.

The senators declined to cite examples of election problems in their statement praising another state’s legal action against their own state.

Election law professor Rick Hasen said the Texas case lacks legal merit because it has no say in how other states choose their presidential electors and it would disenfranchise tens of millions of voters.

“This is a press release masquerading as a lawsuit,” said Hasen of the University of California, Irvine. “There’s no reason to believe the voting conducted in any of the states was done unconstitutionally.”

Judges have repeatedly dismissed similar lawsuits in Georgia. U.S. District Judge Timothy Batten, an appointee of President George W. Bush, said decertifying Georgia’s election results would have amounted to “judicial activism.”