On Wednesday, the Donald Trump campaign sued Pennsylvania, Michigan, and a county in Georgia and requested a recount of votes in Wisconsin as candidate Joe Biden made gains in the battle for the presidency.
The campaign filed the suit against Michigan as Biden gained ground there, but before The Associated Press formally projected that Biden would win the state that same day.
The suit against Michigan alleges that Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson allowed absentee ballots to be counted without the presence of bipartisan observers and challengers.
The AP reported that it observed poll watchers monitoring both sides on Wednesday.
Trump tweeted Wednesday, despite Biden’s lead in the state, proclaiming: “we hereby claim the State of Michigan,” alleging there were “secretly dumped ballots,” included in vote counting.
Twitter flagged the tweet as fully or partially disputed and possibly misleading.
In the suit filed in Pennsylvania, the Trump campaign complained of a lack of transparency, claiming representatives were not able to observe vote counting.
Republican Philadelphia City Commissioner Al Schmidt said representatives from both parties were watching as votes were counted.
“They’re observing all of it,” Schmidt told CBS Philly.
The campaign is also challenging a Pennsylvania Supreme Court order that allows ballots received up to three days after the election to be counted. If ballots are postmarked by Nov. 3, they can be counted if received by Friday.
The Trump campaign is calling for vote counting to be stopped in both states temporarily until representatives are given “meaningful” access at polling locations and allowed to review ballots that have already been processed.
In Pennsylvania, Trump maintains a less than 200,000-vote lead, although the lead continues to narrow as mail-in ballots are counted.
The claim against Georgia’s Chatham County alleges that election officials in the South Georgia county improperly mixed mail-in ballots received after the 7 p.m. Election Day deadline with valid ballots. By late Wednesday evening Trump held a lead of less than 1 percentage point in the Peach State as thousands of ballots in Georgia remained to be counted.
In Wisconsin, a state called for Biden on Wednesday, the Trump campaign said it would immediately request a recount.
Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien said in a statement that there were reports of “irregularities,” in the state, which call in question the “validity of results.”
As Biden neared 270 electoral votes, Trump tweeted, “They are finding Biden votes all over the place,” and asserted that “damage” had been done to the electoral system.
The lawsuits come the day after Trump prematurely announced his victory, declaring himself the winner of the election and hosting a celebratory event in the East Wing of the White House.
His premature celebration was met with criticism from both ides of the aisle. Biden issued a sharp rebuke of his comments Tuesday, saying it is the “voters’ place” to declare the winner of the election.
By Wednesday evening the AP had awarded 264 electoral votes to Joe Biden and 214 to Donald Trump. The Washington Post reported Wednesday that Trump does not yet have any legal grounds to contest the election.