Detroit voters file lawsuit against Trump campaign, claiming disenfranchisement of Black voters

Vote Pins
Photo credit Getty Images

(WWJ/AP) Three Detroit voters are now pushing back on the Trump campaign with a lawsuit, claiming his efforts to block the certification of the vote in Wayne County is also an attempt to disenfranchise Black voters.

The federal lawsuit, filed by the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, accuses President Donald Trump of pressuring Election officials to delay certification of Michigan’s Election results.

The advocacy group claims voter’s rights are being violated because the President is targeting Detroit, where nearly 80% of the residents are Black, according to the United States Census Bureau.

“The lawsuit asks the judge to stop quote ‘mass voter suppression’” WWJ Legal Analyst Charlie Langton said.

Community advocate, Frank McGhee, told the Associated Press (AP) he was outraged when he watched two Republican canvassers vote against certifying the Election results for Wayne County, seeing it as an attempt to threaten Black-voter mobilization efforts they had fought so hard for.

"I thought, these are the ultimate executioners, if you will, put in place so that quietly they could take what belongs to us,” he told the AP.

Black voters and other voters of color were promised free and fair access to the polls through the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Prior to its passage, Black voters often faced intimidation and violence, sometimes deadly, for registering to vote. Where they could register, some had to face literacy tests and poll taxes.

The Board of State Canvassers is scheduled to hold a meeting remotely Monday at 1 p.m. and they are expected to vote to certify the results throughout all of Michigan.

“If that’s the case, this lawsuit really becomes unnecessary,” Langton said.

Last week, two Republican canvassers in Wayne County refused to certify the results, leading to a deadlock. After public backlash, they reversed their decisions and certified the votes, 2-1 for Biden. When Mr. Trump spoke with them, they attempted to rescind their vote. Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said the canvassers had no legal basis to do so.

An attorney for the Board later confirmed in an opinion that the two canvassers could not rescind their vote.

Mr. Trump took to Twitter on Thursday, tweeting: ““Voter Fraud in Detroit is rampant and has been for many years.”

He did not provide any evidence for his claims.

ABC News reports Biden took victory over Mr. Trump in Wayne County, which includes Detroit; 68% of the vote to 30%.