In a Monday memo to US attorneys which was obtained by The Associated Press, Attorney General William Barr wrote that DOJ investigations “may be conducted if there are clear and apparently-credible allegations of irregularities that, if true, could potentially impact the outcome of a federal election in an individual State.”
This action complies with the demands of President Donald Trump who has refused to concede the Nov. 3 election and is claiming that there has been a widespread, multi-state conspiracy to steal the vote.
Richard Pilger, the Justice Department official in charge of investigating voter fraud, resigned a few hours after the AG’s directive had been sent out, according to an email Pilger sent to his colleagues which was obtained by The New York Times.
According to DOJ sources speaking to the Times, Barr emphasized the need for investigating allegations of ineligible voters in Nevada, and fraudulently backdated mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania. Both claims have been made by Republicans this past week, but so far have not been supported by credible evidence.
President Trump’s campaign on Monday sued to stop the certification of the election results in Pennsylvania, as counties continued to sort through provisional and mail-in ballots. Pennsylvania, with its 20 electoral votes, on Saturday put Democrat Joe Biden over the 270 votes required to win the presidency.
Biden enjoys a significant lead in several swing states and so far there haven’t been enough documented reports of improperly counted or cast votes to change the election’s outcome. Also, Republican and Democratic election officials have stated that despite minor problems, which are to be expected in a vote by a record 145 million Americans, the election went well. The problems included voting machines breaking down and lost or miscast ballots, but so far there haven’t been enough of those reported to overturn the election results.
Barr wrote: “While it is imperative that credible allegations be addressed in a timely and effective manner, it is equally imperative that Department personnel exercise appropriate caution and maintain the Department’s absolute commitment to fairness, neutrality, and non-partisanship.”
The Secretary of State in each state must certify the election results by December 8, which is therefore the date by which all recounts and lawsuits must be resolved. The Electoral College will meet on December 14 to finalize the outcome.