NAACP LDF Lawsuit: Trump Violated Voting Rights Act
The NAACP Legal Defense Fund filed a federal lawsuit against President Donald Trump and his campaign on Friday on behalf of Black Michigan voters, accusing both of violating the voting rights law.
The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court in Washington, argued that Trump was pressuring election officials not to certify votes in Michigan on false allegations of electoral fraud in order to suppress votes, particularly those of black voters.
The fraud allegations have been "consistently debunked and the campaign's trial attempts have been rejected by courts in multiple states," Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund Inc., said in a statement.
"The president's use of dog whistles as an indication of the illegitimacy of the votes cast by black voters in Detroit, Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Atlanta is an appeal to a dangerous and caustic racist narrative of electoral fraud," she added.
The lawsuit argued that the "President's tactics repeated the worst abuses in our nation's history, as black Americans were largely denied a vote in American democracy for the first two centuries of the republic."
The defendants "openly seek to disenfranchise black voters, including voters in Detroit, Michigan," the lawsuit said. "Repeating false allegations of electoral fraud, thoroughly debunked, the defendants pressured Michigan state and local officials not to count votes from Wayne County, Michigan ... disenfranchising hundreds of thousands of voters."
The Voting Rights Act of 1965 "protects against efforts to intimidate officials or force them to disenfranchise black voters," Ifill said.
The lawsuit called on Trump or his campaign to stop any efforts to deprive voters of their rights.
The NAACP Legal Defense Fund sued on behalf of three black residents of Detroit and the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization.
Neither the White House nor the Trump campaign immediately responded to requests from HuffPost for comments on the lawsuit.
Neither the White House nor the campaign have yet submitted a response to the lawsuit.
Joe Biden won Michigan with around 140,000 votes and voted particularly well in Detroit, making Trump and his campaign a key target for their challenges.
The president and his campaign have tried to find evidence somewhere to support their allegations of electoral fraud. You dropped a suit with challenging results in Michigan on Thursday.
Trump invited the state's lawmakers, both Republicans, to meet in the White House on Friday. Observers suspected the president's meeting was a long-term attempt to convince them to use their power to sway the election for him against the will of Michigan voters.
Legislators did not leave the meeting convinced that they should take action to change the election result.
"We have not yet received any information that could change the Michigan election results, and as lawmakers we will obey the law and follow the normal process with regards to Michigan's voters," said Mike Shirkey and Michigan, Senate Majority Leader Lee Chatfield said in a joint statement.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that the NAACP filed the lawsuit. The NAACP Legal Defense Fund, which is completely independent from the NAACP, filed the lawsuit.
About 9 out of 10 black women voted for Democrats in this election
Why can Trump try to steal the election? Blame the electoral college.
Trump cannot convince Michigan lawmakers that Joe Biden didn't win the election
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.
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