Week in review: Trump challenges election norms, Texas rules against GOP and record-breaking coronavirus cases

A weekly recap of recent political news.

Texas Votes Challenged by Republican Lawsuit

A federal judge ruled against a Republican-led push to invalidate 120,000 Texas votes on Monday. Republicans alleged 10 drive-through voting sites in Harris County, mostly Democratic, to have violated state and federal law as an illegal expansion to curbside voting.

One day earlier, the Texas Supreme Court unanimously rejected an emergency motion brought by Republicans Sunday for the same lawsuit, setting the stage for the election eve hearing.

A largely Democratic stronghold, Harris County includes Houston, the fourth largest city in the nation. The new drive-through system was tested over the summer after unanimous approval by county commissioners.

Final Push In Pennsylvania, Swing States

With one day to go, both presidential candidates are campaigning in swing states, trying to bring home any remaining undecided votes.

Joe Biden made several stops in his home state of Pennsylvania, where polls give the former vice president a slight, but steady, lead.

President Donald Trump, seeking to shore up last minute support in key battleground states, held four rallies on Saturday. He is scheduled to speak in Joe Biden’s hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania on Monday. Trump also plans to hit Michigan, Iowa, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida by Tuesday.

Trump Determined To Challenge Election Results

In Iowa this weekend, Trump told crowds the election should be decided by the end of Nov. 3, threatening to use his army of lawyers to battle remaining voting disputes. The president discredited the inevitability of millions of votes still in flux when polls close on Tuesday.

As it is standard practice for ballot counting to continue after polls close, no state is legally bound to report final results by the end of election night.

Several factors suggest votes will come in after Nov. 3. Some states have extended the time to accept mail ballots due to the coronavirus and delays in mail service. Valid ballots, with a legitimate postal stamp, will likely come in late.

At least 92 million Americans have already voted. Of the nearly 59 million who did so by mail, Democrats represent a disproportionately large share. And in many swing states, mail-in votes are counted after in-person votes.

Coronavirus Update

The U.S. hit yet another grim milestone in the coronavirus epidemic — 229,000 Americans have died from the disease, as the country recorded its worst week for total virus cases.

Dr. Deborah Birx said on Friday that 1,200 counties, or one-third of the country, are now hot spots. Nearly 100,000 new cases were recorded on Friday while deaths are now inching toward 1,000 a day.

As of Sunday, California had 935,332 confirmed cases and 17,670 deaths. While Los Angeles County is still deemed too risky to reopen, other areas have begun to ease restrictions.