(The Center Square) – Ballots mailed on Election Day in Pennsylvania will still be counted as long as they arrive within the next three days, the state Supreme Court ruled Thursday.
Before the decision, the deadline for ballots to be received was the same as when polls close the evening of Nov. 3. The extended deadline increases the odds that the outcome of key elections will take multiple days to determine – including the presidential election in which the Keystone State is a key battleground.
In another ruling, the court refused to allow the Green Party nominee for the presidency to appear on the ballot, delivering a victory to Democrats who worried he might take votes from their nominee, former Vice President Joe Biden.
The ballot deadline extension had been promoted by the Wolf administration, and legislative Republican leaders derided Thursday’s decision as one that could lead to electoral fraud.
The extended deadline increases the odds that the outcome of key elections will take multiple days to determine – including the presidential election in which the Keystone State is a key battleground.
“Today’s decision makes Pennsylvania’s elections less secure and opens the door to serious questions about the integrity of the process in one of the most significant national and state elections in recent memory,” House Speaker Bryan Cutler and Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff said in a joint statement. “Even more concerning is that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has once again normalized the Wolf administration’s disrespect for the Constitution, the rule of law and the voice of the people.”
Their counterparts in the Legislature’s other chamber, Senate President Pro Tempore and Majority Leader Jake Corman, expressed similar outrage and hinted that they might turn to the federal courts to overrule the state court’s decision.
“We believe the Court has erred in its ruling and is jeopardizing the accountability and security of our election process in Pennsylvania,” Scarnati and Corman said in a news release. “We will continue to review the decision, exploring our options to ensure trust in the election process and defend the Constitution against this activist court.”
Unlike many other heavily populated states such as California, Texas and New York, Pennsylvania is often up for grabs in presidential elections. The state’s turn toward Donald Trump was one of the keys to his victory in the Electoral College in the 2016 election. Biden, hoping to put the state back in the Democratic column this time around, has touted the fact that he was born in Pennsylvania before he moved to Delaware, where he later became a U.S. senator.
Dave Lemery is a veteran journalist with more than 20 years of experience. He was the editor of Suburban Life Media when its flagship newspaper was named best weekly in Illinois, and he has worked at papers in South Carolina, Indiana, Idaho
This piece was originally published in The Center Square. Read the original article here.