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Pennsylvania Republicans sue in last-ditch effort to stop election certification

A group of Pennsylvania Republicans have filed an emergency lawsuit seeking to block certification of the election results in the Keystone State, which President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenDC residents jumped at opportunity to pay for meals for National Guardsmen Joe Biden might bring 'unity' – to the Middle East Biden shouldn't let defeating cancer take a backseat to COVID MORE won by more than 80,000 votes. 

The emergency petition, filed in state court this weekend, comes ahead of Monday’s deadline for Pennsylvania counties to certify their voting results, part of the process of formalizing President TrumpDonald TrumpNYT: Rep. Perry played role in alleged Trump plan to oust acting AG Arizona GOP censures top state Republicans McCain, Flake and Ducey Biden and UK prime minister discuss NATO, multilateralism during call MORE’s electoral defeat.

Among the plaintiffs are Trump ally Rep. Mike KellyGeorge (Mike) Joseph KellyREAD: The Republicans who voted to challenge election results Here are the Republicans planning to challenge the Electoral College results On The Money: Congress passes bill to avert shutdown as coronavirus talks drag into weekend | Federal Reserve fight imperils relief talks MORE (R-Pa.), who has asked the court to strike down an expanded mail ballot policy that Pennsylvania put in place last year after it was passed by the state's GOP-held legislature.  

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Biden won three of every four mail-in ballots cast in the state, according to an analysis of Pennsylvania Department of State data by The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The lawsuit is part of an increasingly desperate legal effort by the Trump campaign and its allies to seek judicial orders overturning the result of the national election that Biden won by more than 6 million raw votes. 

The Trump campaign is engaged in separate litigation in Pennsylvania federal court.  

The campaign on Monday is expected to file an appeal of its stinging loss in federal district court on Saturday, when a federal judge dismissed the campaign's attempt to invalidate millions of votes. 

In a scathing opinion, U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann ruled that the campaign’s claims of widespread electoral misconduct amounted to “strained legal arguments without merit and speculative accusations" that were "unsupported by evidence."

"In the United States of America, this cannot justify the disenfranchisement of a single voter, let alone all the voters of its sixth most populated state,” he wrote. “Our people, laws, and institutions demand more.” 

The campaign on Sunday said it would appeal Brann’s ruling to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit.