The Washington State Democratic Party yesterday filed motions to intervene in and to dismiss lawsuits filed by Republican activists demanding unlawful Arizona-style “audits” of the 2020 election results in counties across the state
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 7, 2021
The Washington State Democratic Party yesterday filed motions to intervene in and dismiss lawsuits filed by Republican activists demanding baseless Arizona-style “audits” of the 2020 election results in counties across the state.
The lawsuits were filed in King, Pierce, Snohomish, Thurston, Whatcom, Lincoln, Franklin, and Clark counties, all by a group called the Washington Election Integrity Coalition United, nearly a year after the November 2020 elections. The plaintiffs assert, without explaining the factual basis for their claims, that the county auditors engaged in widespread “election fraud” and that 400,000 votes were added, 6,000 votes were flipped, and “thousands of voters were removed” in “one or more statewide races before, during, and/or after the election”. They offer no evidence to support any of these allegations.
The Democratic Party’s motion to dismiss clearly lays out how these lawsuits are baseless, without evidence, and contrary to Washington law. The motion argues that no basis exists to challenge the long-certified results of the 2020 election.
“These lawsuits are little more than warmed-over versions of the meritless ‘fraud’ claims that the Trump campaign and its supporters filed across the country after the 2020 election and that were uniformly rejected by every court to have considered them. The Washington State Democratic Party is proud to stand up and fight back against these despicable attempts and false narratives to undermine our democracy,” said Washington State Democratic Party Chair Tina Podlodowski. “It’s disappointing and frustrating that these allegations of voter fraud continue to be circulated by Republicans without evidence. They seem to think that their path to power is by discrediting our democracy and riling up a far-right base with conspiracy theories. They are using it all as an excuse to push voter suppression legislation and undermine confidence in the results of the 2022 and 2024 elections well in advance of voting. Washington state voters deserve better than this and we expect that these lawsuits will be promptly thrown out by the courts.”
These are not the only election lawsuits filed in Washington state. Republican gubernatorial candidate Loren Culp, now running for Congress, sued Secretary of State Kim Wyman in December 2020 claiming that there were “intolerable voting anomalies” and that the election was “at all times fraudulent.” Culp and his attorney Stephen Pidgeon withdrew that lawsuit in January 2021 after the Attorney General’s office warned Pidgeon that the state intended to file a motion to dismiss the case and to ask the judge to impose sanctions for making meritless claims in a court of law. Pidgeon is currently under investigation by the Office of Disciplinary Counsel at the Washington State Bar Association for unprofessional conduct relating to this lawsuit, based on a complaint filed by the Washington State Democratic Party earlier this year.
Besides the lawsuits, the Washington State Republican Party has formed an official “Election Integrity Committee” chaired by former GOP legislative candidate Bill Bruch. Republican legislators, led by Rep. Robert Sutherland of the 39th legislative district, Rep. Vicki Kraft of the 17the legislative district, and Rep. Brad Klippert of the 8th legislative district, have also supported these baseless claims of fraud and hosted an “Audit WA” event in August, at which Republican legislators and activists alleged election fraud without proof.
Outside of Washington, the Republican Party has worked tirelessly to undermine the results of the 2020 election across the country, from the attempted insurrection to overturn the electoral college results on January 6, 2021, to Donald Trump’s lawyers seeking a legal argument under which the Vice President could throw out the electoral college results, to the “audit” of the Maricopa County election results in Arizona, and more. These latest lawsuits in Washington appear to be part of a larger national strategy by the Republican Party to undermine public confidence in our electoral system.
“These attacks on our democracy should outrage every American, regardless of their political affiliation,” said Podlodowski.
For reference, the lawsuits in question are:
Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Kimsey, No. 21-2-01775-06 (Sept. 16, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Wise, No. 21-2-12603-7-KNT (Sept. 22, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Anderson, No. 21-2-07551-9 (Sept. 21, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Fell, No. 21-2-04302-31 (Sept. 16, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Bradrick, No. 21-2-00949-37 (Sept. 10, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Hall, No. 21-2-01641-34 (Sept. 21, 2021), DKT 1, Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Beaton, No. 21-2-50572-11 (Oct. 5, 2021), DKT 1; Washington Election Integrity Coalition United et al. v. Schumacher, No. 21-2-00042-22 (Oct. 4, 2021), DKT 1.
The motion filed by the state party can be read here.