It’s one thing for Rudy Giuliani to go on television to push wild conspiracy theories about how ballot counters, observers, a company that manufactures vote counting machines, a dead Venezuelan strongman and China all successfully collaborated to steal the presidential election from Donald Trump. It’s another thing to prove it in court, as Trump’s personal lawyer found out on Tuesday.
Arguing a case inside a courtroom for the first time in decades, Giuliani tried to convince federal Judge Matthew Brann of the Middle District of Pennsylvania that almost seven million votes in Pennsylvania should be thrown out because, Giuliani alleged, two people were denied the right to vote.
“You’re alleging that the two individual plaintiffs were denied the right to vote,” Brann asked the Trump campaign attorney at one point, “But at bottom, you’re asking this court to invalidate more than 6.8 million votes, thereby disenfranchising every single voter in the Commonwealth. Could you tell me how this result could possibly be justified?”
CNN reports that at times the former New York mayor and federal prosecutor, who reportedly was asking $20,000 a day to do Trump’s legal work, appeared to approach the case like a criminal trial instead of a civil lawsuit, announcing “exhibits” he sought to introduce and describing allegations in the lawsuit as “charges.”
Mark Aronchick, a lawyer for a handful of Pennsylvania counties who argued against Giuliani, said, “This was one of the strangest court appearances I’ve ever had.” One of the more outrageous assertions the president’s attorney made is that Philadelphia election workers are “a little mafia.”
“I couldn’t let that go, Aronchick said. “These are patriots. These are public servants, people who in the middle of a pandemic went out there day after day and sometimes all night trying to get this election moving and right for the American people. To sit there and see these sideswipes and outrageous accusations – a little mafia, gigantic conspiracies among the big cities – he was living in his own fantasy but he wasn’t living in the reality of this court case.
“You can say a lot things on Twitter and in parking lot driveways and the like, but when you go into an American courtroom you have to have evidence, facts, you have to make legal arguments that are appropriate,” he added.
The judge did not rule on the case yesterday and said he would consider additional written evidence either side wanted to submit.
You can watch Aronchick’s interview with Jim Sciutto here, courtesy of CNN.
“He was living in his own fantasy, but he wasn't living in the reality of this court case,” Mark Aronchick, attorney for Pennsylvania counties sued by the Trump campaign, tells @jimsciutto about arguing against Rudy Giuliani in court. https://t.co/RMTtUHij7o pic.twitter.com/x1YJEzhBdf
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) November 18, 2020