Politics2020 Election


Plaintiff In Trump Election Lawsuit Is A Former State Lawmaker

Former PA state Rep. Lawrence Roberts is one of two plaintiffs in President Trump’s legal attempt to block Joe Biden’s win in Pennsylvania.
Posted at 6:31 PM, Nov 19, 2020

David John Henry and Lawrence Roberts are the two Pennsylvania voters listed as “injured parties” in President Trump’s federal lawsuit seeking to block the state from certifying President-elect Joe Biden’s win.

Roberts, 79, was a former state representative who served in Harrisburg for 14 years.

He was a Democrat but later announced public support for U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican.

Online voting records reviewed by Newsy’s investigative team show Roberts’ November ballot listed as canceled in Fayette County.

While the Trump lawsuit does not say why Roberts’ ballot was rejected, Fayette County Election Bureau Director Larry Blosser told Newsy it was because Roberts did not put his mail-in vote in the required secrecy envelope.

“Sad to say, he made a mistake,” Blosser said. “Mr. Roberts being in that position, being a legislator, he should’ve known the laws.”

Phone numbers listed for Roberts were out of service.

Newsy was unable to contact him.

Henry, the second plaintiff in the case, declined to answer questions when reached by phone.

The lawsuit says he also sent back a ballot without the secrecy sleeve. 

Some Pennsylvania counties alerted voters who cast “naked ballots,” giving them another chance to vote, but that was an extra step not required by the state.

Voting officials statewide spent months reminding mail voters to use secrecy sleeves.

In a move pushed by Republicans, counties were forbidden from opening ballots until Election Day. That limited the time available to reach voters who sent naked ballots.

Fayette and Lancaster counties don’t dispute that Roberts and Henry learned about their disqualified ballots when it was too late to fix them.

Fayette county told Newsy the secrecy sleeve rule tripped up 22 voters including Roberts.

“I don’t think he was disenfranchised,” Blosser said. “You got to hold the voters somewhat accountable for their actions.”