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Legal News Roundup: November 4

Here’s a roundup of recent legal stories in the news.

President Trump Vows to Take Election Battle to Supreme Court

Law360 – In an early morning press conference, President Donald Trump stated his plans to challenge the results of the presidential election at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Trump declared victory in the election while millions of votes were still being counted across multiple states.

The president expressed his doubts about mail-in ballots. “This is a fraud on the American public. This is an embarrassment to our country,” Trump said from the White House around 2:30 a.m. “We’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop. We don’t want them to find any ballots at 4 o’clock in the morning and add them to the list. It’s a very sad moment.”

Election law experts predict that while post-election litigation may be inevitable, a repeat of Bush v. Gore at the high court is still a long shot, with the final outcome more likely coming down to election officials counting ballots.

Read the full story.

Some States Turn Green After Election

BuzzFeed News – Drug reform was a theme for many states during Tuesday’s elections.

In New Jersey, Arizona, Montana and South Dakota, residents voted to legalize recreational marijuana. Mississippi and South Dakota voted to legalize the medical use of marijuana in-state.

For the first time in U.S. history, Oregon decriminalized hard drugs, like cocaine, heroin, oxycodone and methamphetamine. The state also voted to legalize psychedelic mushrooms.

Read the full story.

Prop 22 Passes in California

CNN – California voters have passed a costly and controversial ballot measure to exempt firms like Uber and Lyft from having to classify their gig workers in the state as employees rather than as independent contractors.

Backed by more than $200 million from Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Instacart and Uber-owned Postmates, Proposition 22, or Prop 22, is the costliest ballot measure in California’s history, according to Ballotpedia.

In August, after a California court first ordered Uber and Lyft to reclassify their drivers in the state as employees, both companies threatened to shut down in the state if they were forced to reclassify their workers. The companies were granted a temporary reprieve as they appealed the ruling.

Read the full story.

‘Record-Shattering’ Lawyer Turnout

Reuters – A “record-shattering” number of lawyers volunteered to help defend people’s rights to cast a ballot in Tuesday’s presidential election, said Kristen Clarke, the president and executive director of the National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

The national, nonpartisan Election Protection coalition had 42,000 trained legal volunteers this year, a major increase from the 4,000 volunteers who turned out in 2016.

“The growth is responsive to the overwhelming challenges that voters face this season,” Clarke said. One challenge was the coronavirus pandemic, which forced polling places to enact social distancing measures and led to an unprecedented wave of early voting.

Read the full story.