It was a couple of weeks ago when the Wisconsin Supreme Court issued a deeply disappointing ruling: The conservative majority dramatically curtailed the use of ballot drop boxes, despite the total absence of problems with Badger State voters using the boxes.
This, evidently, gave Donald Trump a ridiculous idea: Shortly after the ruling was issued, the former president argued that if drop boxes can’t be used in future elections, then they shouldn’t have been used in past elections. And if they shouldn’t have been used in 2020, the Republican surmised, then many Wisconsin ballots from the last election cycle should now be deemed invalid.
And if many Wisconsin ballots from the last election cycle are deemed invalid, Trump concluded, then he secretly won the state he actually lost.
That was the former president’s utterly bonkers public case. In private, things were even stranger. CNBC reported:
Former President Donald Trump this month called Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos and urged him to decertify President Joe Biden’s 2020 election win in that state, Vos said in a new interview Tuesday. “It’s very consistent. He makes his case, which I respect,” Vos told WISN-TV 12 News in Milwaukee. “He would like us to do something different in Wisconsin. I explained that it’s not allowed under the Constitution,” Vos said. “He has a different opinion.”
Consider the timeline of events. Trump learned of the state Supreme Court ruling on ballot drop boxes, which led him to call the Republican state Assembly Speaker and pitch — which is to say, re-pitch — the idea of decertifying the 2020 results. When Vos once again explained that this would legally impossible, the former president turned to his Twitter-like platform to whine.
“Looks like Speaker Robin Vos, a long time professional RINO always looking to guard his flank, will be doing nothing about the amazing Wisconsin Supreme Court decision,” Trump wrote. “The Democrats would like to sincerely thank Robin, and all of his fellow RINOs, for letting them get away with ‘murder.’”
It was a foolish and juvenile response, but let’s not miss the forest for the trees: 20 months after Election Day, the former president is still, as recently as last week, looking for allies whose arms he can twist in order to undo his own defeat.
What’s more, it’s not just Wisconsin. Circling back to our recent coverage, it was this past September when the former president insisted, “Arizona must immediately decertify their 2020 Presidential Election Results.” Two months later, the Republican went further, demanding that Georgia also “start the process of decertifying the 2020 Election.” This came on the heels of related rhetoric in which he talked up the idea of undoing his defeat and returning to the presidency.
Let’s also not forget that Trump isn’t the only one peddling this nonsense. Christina Bobb, a former OAN host who’s now working for the former president, raised the prospect earlier this month of states decertifying their 2020 votes after the 2022 midterm elections.
As recently as April, The New York Times reported, “In statehouses and courtrooms across the country, as well as on right-wing news outlets, allies of Mr. Trump — including the lawyer John Eastman — are pressing for states to pass resolutions rescinding Electoral College votes for President Biden and to bring lawsuits that seek to prove baseless claims of large-scale voter fraud. Some of those allies are casting their work as a precursor to reinstating the former president.”
As a legal and procedural matter, all of this is simply stark raving mad. There is no scenario in which a state can undo election results for no reason. But as Trump’s online missives made clear, he either doesn’t know that or doesn’t care.