The Corner

Law & the Courts

Third Circuit Sets Schedule for Expedited Appeal

Shows what I know.

The Third Circuit federal appeals court has granted the request by President Trump’s campaign that it entertain, on an expedited schedule, an appeal of a narrow aspect of District Judge Matthew Brann’s ruling denying the campaign’s challenge to Pennsylvania’s conduct of the presidential election. Specifically, the campaign seeks review of Judge Brann’s denial of its attempt to file a second amended complaint and to delay the state’s certification of the vote.

We posted my column this morning explaining why, in my estimation, this appeal has scant hope of success. But I thought the Third Circuit would reject it summarily. Instead, as announced this afternoon by Jenna Ellis, one of the president’s lawyers, the court will consider briefs from both sides. The Trump team must file by 4 p.m. today, and Pennsylvania officials by the same time tomorrow (Tuesday, November 24).

To be clear, the Third Circuit has only agreed to consider briefs. The court has neither said it will necessarily want oral argument, nor done anything to stay or otherwise delay the commonwealth’s certification of the counties’ tabulations, which is taking place today, and which was one of Judge Brann’s reasons for declining to allow the Trump campaign to file a second amended complaint.