Donald Trump Is Committing A Federal Crime If He Continues To Refuse Election Loss, Law Professor Says

U.S. President Donald Trump attends the announcement of the introduction of the Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy (RAISE) Act in the Roosevelt Room at the White House on August 2, 2017 in Washington, DC.
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Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe appeared on CNN’s OutFront on Tuesday and suggested that Donald Trump’s continued refusal to accept an electoral loss to Joe Biden could become a federal crime, Raw Story reported.

“There’s nothing that Pompeo or Trump or any of those guys can do to prevent Biden from becoming the president,” the professor said.

“On January 20, at high noon, he becomes the president of the United States when he takes the oath. And any Trump administration official, including the president himself, who pretends to have power under the executive branch after that point is committing a federal felony, punishable by imprisonment, in addition to any other crimes they might have committed.”

Although Trump continues to pursue lawsuits to contest the election in swing states like Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, Tribe does not believe that they will be enough to shift the results. The law professor claimed that the president has lost twelve suits thus far and said none of his legal challenges contain evidence of voter fraud.

U.S. President Donald Trump waits on the arrival of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the White House May 16, 2017 in Washington, DC.
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Per Business Insider, one of the Trump team’s recent lawsuits targets Michigan. According to a 342-page lawsuit announced on Tuesday, the state’s votes should not be certified. Despite this claim, the suit reportedly does not make any specific claims of voter or electoral fraud. According to the publication, the majority of the case is made up of affidavits from GOP election observers, some of whom complained that coronavirus pandemic restrictions required them to stand more than six feet away from ballot counters.

Elections expert Justin Levitt told Business Insider that the arguments in the lawsuit are not sufficient to invalidate the election outcome in Michigan. In particular, Levitt noted that voting results could not be discarded because of suspicion of wrongdoing.

“I don’t believe Michigan law requires the election officials be supervised every step of the way by observers,” he added.

Trump faces potential legal battles of his own once he leaves office. In addition to the possible felony Tribe mentioned, CNN reported on legal issues that await the commander in chief once he’s out of the White House. Notably, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. is investigating the financial workings of the Trump Organization, which could lead to charges. Elsewhere, Trump is facing scrutiny from New York Attorney General Letitia James — who is examining how the real estate mogul valued his assets — and defamation lawsuits from E. Jean Carroll, Mary Trump, and Summer Zervos.