PA Supreme Court rules incorrectly marked mail-in ballots won’t count in the election

Revisiting a question that has been debated since the 2020 election, Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court has ruled that undated mail-in or absentee ballots can’t be counted in the upcoming midterms. 

The brief order was handed down November 1, a week before Election Day.

Pennsylvania court makes ballot ruling

Pennsylvania law requires ballots to be marked with a date on their outer envelope. The six-member Supreme Court was divided on whether the requirement violated civil rights law, which says ballots should not be discarded over “immaterial” errors.

The court nevertheless ordered election officials to “segregate and preserve any ballots” that do not have a correct date. The Republican National Committee, which led the legal challenge against Pennsylvania Democratic officials, hailed the decision as a massive victory for election integrity.

“Republicans went to court, and now Democrats and all counties have to follow the law: this is a milestone in Republicans’ ongoing efforts to make it easier to vote and harder to cheat in Pennsylvania and nationwide,” RNC chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said.

Pivotal election

Pennsylvania’s Senate race between Republican candidate Dr. Oz and Democrat John Fetterman has tightened significantly and will be key to deciding which party controls the United States Senate.  The governorship is also up for grabs between Republican Doug Mastriano and Democrat Josh Shapiro.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling comes a month after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned an appeals court decision that said mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania could be counted even without dates.

Pennsylvania’s Democratic Secretary of State, Leigh Chapman, had also directed officials to count undated mail-in ballots.

Echoes of 2020

Chapman has already warned voters that election results may take a few days after Election Day to be determined, but she claimed that “delays in results does not mean anything bad is happening,” a nod to the election fraud theories that have persisted since the chaotic 2020 election.

Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court allowed mail-in ballots to be accepted three days late that year, and undated ballots were accepted as well.

It would take several days after Election Day before the media declared Joe Biden the winner in Pennsylvania, clearing his path to the White House.

Pennsylvania counties have received roughly 850,000 completed mail-in ballots so far this cycle. Of the 1.4 million requested ballots, roughly 70 percent have been Democrat and 20 percent have been Republican.