If there is any swing state that worries me about election shenanigans, it’s Pennsylvania.

I remember election night 2016, when the networks were refusing to call Pennsylvania for Trump into the early morning hours. The vote was close. I was just waiting for someone to “find” a precinct in Philadephia that somehow had not been counted, or some other miraculous Clinton votes. It never happened, and Trump won with the newtorks finally calling it.

Pennsylvania Democrats worry me. A lot.

So it’s very discomforting that absentee and mail-in ballot protections are being thrown away by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. In a case we previously covered, John Roberts Joined Liberals To Permit PA To Count Non-Postmarked Ballots 3-Days After Election Day:

Roberts joined the three liberals to reject a stay (in two cases, hereand here) of a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Order that permits mail-in ballots to be counted if received three days after Election Day — even if the envelope has no postmark. That’s right, even if there is no postmark. Justices Thomas, Alito, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh would have granted the stay….

Because the Supreme Court split 4-4, the PA Supreme Court order stands.

Today the PA Supreme Court ruled that county clerks could not reject absentee and mail-in ballots where the voter signatures didn’t match. Politico reports:

The Pennsylvania state Supreme Court ruled Friday that ballots in the state cannot be rejected because of signature comparisons, backing up guidance issued by the state’s chief elections officer heading into Pennsylvania’s first presidential election with no-excuse mail voting.

“We conclude that the Election Code does not authorize or require county election boards to reject absentee or mail-in ballots during the canvassing process based on an analysis of a voter’s signature,” the state Supreme Court wrote in an opinion signed by six of the seven justices, including five Democrats and one Republican.

The seventh justice, another Republican, concurred with the ruling.

The court directs “the county boards of elections not to reject absentee or mail-in ballots for counting, computing, and tallying based on signature comparisons conducted by county election officials or employees, or as the result of third party challenges based on such comparisons.”

From the Opinion:

For the reasons that follow, we conclude that the Election Code does not authorize or require county election boards to reject absentee or mail-in ballots during the canvassing process based on an analysis of a voter’s signature on the “declaration” 4 contained on the official ballot return envelope for the absentee or mail-in ballot. We, therefore, grant the Secretary’s petition for declarative relief, and direct the county boards of elections not to reject absentee or mail-in ballots for counting, computing, and tallying based on signature comparisons conducted by county election officials or employees, or as the result of third party challenges based on such comparisons

So in Pennsylvania, mail-in ballots don’t need a valid postmark or signature. And they can be counted if received three days after election day.

What possibly could go wrong if the race margin is razor thin?

 

 
donate
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.