The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled that updated mail-in ballots will be set aside and not counted in the upcoming midterm elections.
The court told the boards of elections in each Pennsylvania county “to refrain from counting any absentee and mail-in ballots received for the November 8, 2022 general election that are contained in undated or incorrectly dated outer envelopes.”
Republicans are touting this a major win for election integrity both in the state of Pennsylvania and potentially as a precedent for other states across the nation.
Pennsylvania’s acting Secretary of the Commonwealth Leigh Chapman (D), on the other hand, had issued guidance to election officials requiring the counties to count the ballots prior to the ruling. Her guidance was in direct opposition to a Supreme Court ruling.
After SCOTUS ruled, Chapman said, “Today’s order from the U.S. Supreme Court vacating the Third Circuit’s decision on mootness grounds was not based on the merits of the issue and does not affect the prior decision of Commonwealth Court in any way. It provides no justification for counties to exclude ballots based on a minor omission, and we expect that counties will continue to comply with their obligation to count all legal votes.”
The RNC, immediately after Chapman went against the SCOTUS ruling, brought the case back to court in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania court was split 3-3, so rather than throwing out undated or misdated ballots, the court “ordered that all the misdated or undated ballots be segregated and preserved by the county boards of elections.”
Pa. Supreme Court: Undated mail-in ballots will not count in 2022 https://t.co/eqgfQzN5nI
— WTAE-TV Pittsburgh (@WTAE) November 1, 2022
Ronna McDaniel, chairwoman of the RNC, tweeted that the decision was a massive legal victory and that “The PA Supreme Court agrees with us that incorrectly or undated mail ballots can not be counted in next week’s elections. Republicans went to court. Now Democrats have to follow the law.”
The PA Supreme Court agrees with us that incorrectly or undated mail ballots can not be counted in next week’s elections.
Republicans went to court. Now Democrats have to follow the law.
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) November 1, 2022
Pennsylvania is home to one of the more hotly contested Senate battles between Republican Mehmet Oz and Democrat John Fetterman. This ruling will help to ensure that the election is secure and that the results are fair.