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Trump strikes in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Biden's management is safer

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U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the Arizona Grand Resort & Spa in Phoenix, Arizona, the United States, on September 14, 2020.

Jonathan Ernst | Reuters

President Donald Trump's already far-reaching efforts to undo an apparent victory for President-elect Joe Biden by challenging the votes in court suffered three major setbacks on Friday in Arizona, Michigan and Pennylvania.

But Trump still refused to allow the race he falsely claimed to have won, despite experts saying he has little hope of invalidating enough Biden votes – in multiple states – to win the former Democratic Vice-President on the electoral college to outdo match.

In Arizona, Trump's election campaign on Friday dropped a legal challenge to a series of ballots in Maricopa County. Biden's overall lead in the state is too great for the controversial ballot papers to make a difference.

The move came a day after NBC News and other media outlets predicted that Biden would win the state's referendum.

In Michigan, where Biden was predicted the winner last week, a judge denied a motion by Trump supporters to block election results certification in Detroit.

And in Pennsylvania, Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar said she had decided not to order no recount or retrial of polls in 67 counties.

For a recount to be ordered, Trump would have to lose less than 0.5% of the votes cast.

But Biden's lead over Trump was 49.8% on Friday afternoon in Keystone State with 20 votes, versus Trump's 48.9% or more than 60,000 votes.

Later on Friday, a judge in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania denied a motion from Trump's campaign to stop counting nearly 600 ballots there. The campaign claimed her address was missing from a signature on the envelope.

Judge Richard Haaz of the Court of Common Pleas stated in his ruling that state law does not require a voter to provide an address on the envelope.

In the Michigan case, the judge dismissed allegations made by two respondents who claimed they found irregularities that allowed invalid ballots to be counted.

Timothy Kenny, chief judge at Wayne County Circuit Court in Detroit, said these individuals "did not have a thorough understanding" of the process of counting votes and that their "interpretation of events was wrong and not believable".

Biden is ahead of Trump in Michigan with more than 145,000 votes.

In his file filed in Maricopa County Court Friday, in which Trump's campaign alleged that numerous voters had invalidated their ballots, the campaign said that "the statewide roster" won Biden with nearly 11,000 votes at the top showed a judicial decision had made the presidential election unnecessary. "

Arizona has 11 votes in Electoral College. NBC last week forecast that Biden Michigan would win by 16 votes.

Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh told CNBC in response to the Arizona filing: "All parties recognize that personal voters, who were likely overwhelmingly Trump voters, have been disenfranchised by voting on the machines in Maricopa County Democrats were given to celebrate that fact are shameful. "

"We continue to investigate President Trump's options in Arizona," Murtaugh said.

But Biden's campaign said, "The Trump campaign lawsuit was frivolous and their motion to withdraw any presidential campaign relief claims confirms that it was nothing more than a waste of time."

"President-elect Joe Biden won Arizona, and now it is time to unite the country and move forward," his campaign said.

The Arizona complaint filed in the Maricopa County Superior Court on Saturday alleged that numerous voters who had submitted ballots in person on election day had been tricked into having their votes disqualified by the electronic tabulator.

The Trump campaign had originally argued that if the disqualified ballots were added to the voting list, it would "determine the outcome of the election for President of the United States in Arizona and / or other controversial offices in Maricopa County."

"Many voters were made aware of a facial irregularity in their ballot paper by these devices … but were induced by poll workers to override the tabulator's rejection of the ballot paper in good faith that their vote would be properly registered and tabulated," says it allegedly in the complaint.

"In fact, overriding the electronic tab warning automatically disqualifies the alleged 'overrides' without additional review or decision."

In its filing on Friday, the campaign said that while the issue of ballots affecting Trump's election chances is controversial because of Biden's national leadership, there are also two rounds of voting for the Board of Supervisors in Maricopa County and for a seat in Senate, "remain in question" in the case.

During a status conference on the case late Friday afternoon, an attorney for Trump's election campaign said that the dispute over how these ballots might affect these other races appears to be controversial too, given the current number of votes in the competitions.

Biden was supposed to win the presidential race last Saturday.

NBC News predicted on Friday that he now has 306 votes for the electoral college, 36 more than it takes to claim a White House victory.

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Katherine Clark