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Statistician in TX lawsuit against multiple states determined probability of Biden win was one in a quadrillion!

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The state of Texas sued Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin shortly before midnight Monday challenging their unlawful election procedures. A statistician in the brief claims that the likelihood of Joe Biden winning the 2020 presidential election was statistically impossible.

A USC and former Harvard statistician has determined the possibility of Joe Biden winning the states of Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin collectively is less than one in a quadrillion to the fourth power (1 in 1 1,000,000,000,000,0004).

Critics have rejected these numbers, with one Stanford professor explaining why the numbers laid out in the lawsuit are ‘incorrect’.

Stanford Professor Justin Ryan Grimmer is one of the detractors who explained on Twitter his point of view, ending with “I’m frankly embarrassed that such statistical incompetence would appear in such a high profile venue.” Grimmer is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a professor in the Department of Political Science at Stanford University. His current research focuses on American political institutions, elections, and developing new machine-learning methods for the study of politics.

The rest of his thread can be read here.

In the lawsuit, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to block four battleground states – Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, from casting “unlawful and constitutionally tainted votes” in the Electoral College.

In the brief submitted to the Supreme Court, Texas reportedly includes a declaration from Pacific Economics Group member and USC economics professor, Charles J. Cicchetti, Ph.D.

Dr. Cicchetti is the former Deputy Director at the Energy and Environmental Policy Center at Harvard University’s John Kennedy School of Government and received his Ph.D. in economics from Rutgers University.

According to Dr. Cicchetti, his calculations show the probability of Joe Biden winning the popular vote in the four states independently given President Trump’s early lead in those States as of 3 a.m. on November 4, 2020, is less than one in a quadrillion.

Texas is arguing that these states violated the U.S. Constitution when they changed voting rules and procedures through the courts or through executive actions. The sticking legal point is that these states did not make the changes through the state legislatures as spelled out in the Constitution.

Additionally, Texas argues that there were differences in voting rules and procedures in different counties within the states, violating the Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause. Finally, Texas argues that there were “voting irregularities” in these states as a result of the above actions.

The Lonestar State is asking the Supreme Court to order the states to allow their legislatures to appoint their electors.

Allen West has also announced that additional states have joined Texas in its lawsuit against unlawful election procedures. Missouri, Louisiana, Arkansas, Alabama, Florida, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Carolina, and South Dakota are all joining the legal effort. Other states will follow suit.

The filed motion and supporting documentation are posted here. It includes the following:

9. Expert analysis using a commonly accepted statistical test further raises serious
questions as to the integrity of this election.”

10. The probability of former Vice President Biden winning the popular vote in the four Defendant States—Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin—independently given President Trump’s early lead in those States as of 3 a.m. on November 4, 2020, is less than one in a quadrillion, or 1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000. For former Vice President Biden to win these four States collectively, the odds of that event happening decrease to less than one in a quadrillion to the fourth power (i.e., 1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000^4). See Decl. of Charles J. Cicchetti, Ph.D. (“Cicchetti Decl.”) at ¶¶ 14-21, 30-31. See App. 4a-7a, 9a. 11.”

11. The same less than one in a quadrillion statistical improbability of Mr. Biden winning the popular vote in the four Defendant States—Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin— independently exists when Mr. Biden’s performance in each of those Defendant States is compared to former Secretary of State Hilary Clinton’s performance in the 2016 general election and President Trump’s performance in the 2016 and 2020 general elections. Again, the statistical improbability of Mr. Biden winning the popular vote in these four States collectively Again, the statistical improbability is 1 in 1,000,000,000,000,000.”

The lawsuit says:

“Certain officials in the Defendant States presented the pandemic as the justification for ignoring state laws regarding absentee and mail-in voting. The Defendant States flooded their citizenry with tens of millions of ballot applications and ballots in derogation of statutory controls as to how they are lawfully received, evaluated, and counted. Whether well-intentioned or not, these unconstitutional acts had the same uniform effect—they made the 2020 election less secure in the Defendant States. Those changes are inconsistent with relevant state laws and were made by non-legislative entities, without any consent by the state legislatures. The acts of these officials thus directly violated the Constitution.”

“This case presents a question of law: Did the Defendant States violate the Electors Clause by taking non-legislative actions to change the election rules that would govern the appointment of presidential electors? These non-legislative changes to the Defendant States’ election laws facilitated the casting and counting of ballots in violation of state law, which, in turn, violated the Electors Clause of Article II, Section 1, Clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution. By these unlawful acts, the Defendant States have not only tainted the integrity of their own citizens’ vote, but their actions have also debased the votes of citizens in Plaintiff State and other States that remained loyal to the Constitution.”

The United States Supreme Court on Tuesday evening ordered Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Georgia to reply to the lawsuit.

The Supreme Court posted online Tuesday evening: “Response to the motion for leave to file a bill of complaint and to the motion for a preliminary injunction and temporary restraining order or, alternatively, for stay and administrative stay requested, due Thursday, December 10, by 3 pm.”

Here is the full statement from Attorney General of Texas Ken Paxton:

“Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton today filed a lawsuit against Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin in the United States Supreme Court. The four states exploited the COVID-19 pandemic to justify ignoring federal and state election laws and unlawfully enacting last-minute changes, thus skewing the results of the 2020 General Election. The battleground states flooded their people with unlawful ballot applications and ballots while ignoring statutory requirements as to how they were received, evaluated, and counted.”

‘“Trust in the integrity of our election processes is sacrosanct and binds our citizenry and the States in this Union together. Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin destroyed that trust and compromised the security and integrity of the 2020 election. The states violated statutes enacted by their duly elected legislatures, thereby violating the Constitution. By ignoring both state and federal law, these states have not only tainted the integrity of their own citizens’ vote, but of Texas and every other state that held lawful elections,” said Attorney General Paxton. “Their failure to abide by the rule of law casts a dark shadow of doubt over the outcome of the entire election. We now ask that the Supreme Court step in to correct this egregious error.”’

“Elections for federal office must comport with federal constitutional standards. For presidential elections, each state must appoint its electors to the electoral college in a manner that complies with the Constitution. The Electors Clause requirement that only state legislatures may set the rules governing the appointment of electors and elections and cannot be delegated to local officials. The majority of the rushed decisions, made by local officials, were not approved by the state legislatures, thereby circumventing the Constitution.”

Paxton added that he hoped the Supreme Court would be willing to carry out their duty and recognize the validity of his case.

“Part of the genius of what the founders put in place is making sure that everybody in a state was at least treated the same,” he said. “In this case … we have county by county distinctions that treated voters differently and we, therefore, have unreliable results.”

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