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Federal judge throws out GOP Georgia lawsuit that aimed to remove absentee ballot drop boxes



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On the third day into early voting for Georgia’s side-by-side U.S. Senate runoff elections, a federal judge Thursday dismissed a case brought by Republicans that sought to scrap absentee ballot drop boxes, Fox News reports, saying that fraud concerns at this stage in the runoffs are “highly speculative.”

In the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia, centered in Augusta, a federal judge dismissed the lawsuit brought by the 12th Congressional District Republican Committee. The plaintiffs had no standing, the judge said, and also saying that courts shouldn’t alter election rules so close to an election, according to Fox News.

Both of Georgia’s January 5 races are key to Democrats and Republicans post-2020 election political efforts. If Democrats sweep both seats, they would have 50 of the 100 seats in the Senate and have Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as the tie-breaking vote, which would make confirming President-elect Joe Biden‘s Cabinet nominees easier for them. On the other end, Republicans want to maintain their slim majority, fearing that Democratic victories in the Peach State could allow for Biden to successfully appoint officials farther to the left of the Democratic establishment.

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While absentee voting has been happening for a couple of weeks in the state, early in-person voting at polling stations commenced on Monday. More than 900,000 Georgians have already voted in the dual races, according to the state’s latest data, with 427,000 of those votes being cast through absentee ballots.

The thrown-out case alleged that procedures used to process absentee ballots during November’s general election–such as signature matching and ballot drop boxes–could open the door for widespread fraud in the runoffs, Fox News reports.

On top of that, the lawsuit also asked that local election officials be forbidden from opening ballot envelopes prior to January 5. Additionally, per Fox News, the suit also sought to discredit guidance from the Secretary of State’s Office on the correct way officials needed to verify signatures on absentee ballots.

Chief Judge Randall Hall, who was nominated to the federal bench by Republican President George W. Bush, found the plaintiff’s allegations of voter fraud “highly speculative.”

“I have real concerns about whether this court […]should even entertain this action at this point,” said Hall. “[…]Fraud concerns at this stage are all highly speculative.”

“We are not even on the eve of an election,” Hall said in striking down the case. “We are, as it relates to this particular election, closing in on halftime.”

This case is the latest in a series of failed attempts from Republicans to challenge the election results and rules in key swing states after November 3. Despite a massive but doomed lawsuit being thrown out of the U.S. Supreme Court on Friday and the Electoral College officially elected Biden to be the next president, President Donald Trump refuses to concede and continues to allege that widespread election fraud occurred, repeatedly claiming that the election was stolen.

RELATED: McConnell congratulates Biden on election victory, draws criticism from some conservatives

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Biden’s Poor Polling and Harris’ Low Electability Rating Could Have Democrats Considering ‘Nuclear Option’

Behind-the-scenes discussion of how Democrats could arrive at a third option for the next election is underway



Biden Kamala
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With polls consistently showing a poor approval rating for President Joe Biden at below 40 percent, and a recent poll put Kamala Harris’ electability at only 28 percent, Democrats are in full panic mode.

Behind-the-scenes discussion of how Democrats could arrive at a third option for the next election is underway. Operatives are preparing for the possibility of a contested presidential primary in which other would-be nominees take on Ms. Harris, but that could be damaging for the party” reports the Telegraph.

Therefore, Democrats are allegedly whispering about a potential “nuclear option” that would call for current Vice President Harris to be nominated to the Supreme Court. The Telegraph writes that “while the scenario is highly improbable, and perhaps a reflection of a Washington rumor mill in overdrive, the fact it has come up at all shows the depths of the predicament the Biden administration currently finds itself in, amid rising inflation, a stalled domestic agenda, and foreign policy disasters.”

The theory in question would call for President Biden to nominate Harris to the Supreme Court in the event a seat opens in the next three years during his administration. Biden could then use “Section 2 of the 25thAmendment to nominate a more popular vice president”, adds the Telegraph.

Under Section 1 of the 25th Amendment, that new vice president could assume the presidency if Biden were to step down while president. They would then become the Democratic nominee in the 2024 presidential election. That same individual could also be the presumptive Democratic nominee in 2024 if Biden chooses not to run for re-election.

One piece of information that is wetting Democrats’ whistle is that current Supreme Court Justice Breyer has said he does not “want to stay on the Supreme Court until I die.”

The Telegraph notes that “the discussion over potential successors to Mr. Biden is highly unusual less than a year into an administration.”

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