Speaking to supporters early Wednesday morning from the East Room of the White House, President Donald Trump said that he will take the 2020 presidential election to the Supreme Court in an attempt to stop ballot counting. Those remarks, which came as multiple states continued to tabulate votes well into the night, left many Americans confused, as the process of counting votes typically lasts well beyond Election Day.
"Frankly, we did win this election. So our goal now is to ensure the integrity, for the good of this nation — this is a very big moment, this is a major fraud on our nation. We want the law to be used in a proper manner, so we'll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop," Trump said in his address. "We don’t want them to find any ballots at 4 o'clock in the morning and add them to the list. It's a very sad moment."
Donald Trump says he’ll take the presidential election to the Supreme Court, but it’s unclear what he means in a country in which vote tabulations routinely continue beyond #ElectionDay, and states largely set the rules for when the count has to end. https://t.co/kOjheK8TVv— The Associated Press (@AP) November 4, 2020
His comments led to plenty of confusion from Americans staying up late to watch the polls, with the Associated Press noting that despite the president’s wish to stop "all voting," voting in the United States is no longer ongoing, with polls having closed Tuesday night. Instead, counting is continuing to take place across the country. The 2020 election was expected to result in an increased number of mail-in ballots, in large part due to the pandemic, though no state will count absentee votes that are postmarked after Election Day.
Currently, the race to 270 electoral votes remains too close to call, and the results of the vote in many states are not expected to be determined until late Wednesday or later. Although the president is currently leading in the key battleground states of Michigan and Pennsylvania, thousands of votes remain to be counted, including large numbers of mail-in ballots, which have the potential to flip those states blue.
The valid votes will be counted. SCOTUS would be involved only if there were votes of questionable validity that would make a difference, which might not be the case. The rule of law will determine the official winner of the popular vote in each state. Let the rule of law work.— Ned Foley (@Nedfoley) November 4, 2020
According to the Associated Press, should Trump wish to put an early end to tabulating results, "there's no way to go directly to the high court with a claim of fraud." They would instead have to start the legal challenge in a state or lower federal court.