People wearing masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) wait to vote in the primary election held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on June 2, 2020.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters
The Supreme Court said on Wednesday that it will not quickly follow Pennsylvania Republicans’ challenge to extend the state’s absentee vote count deadline, even though the justices are aware of the possibility that they may ultimately benefit the Republican Party.
The court announced the ruling with an unsigned order, which is a typical representative of an emergency. Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who was sworn in earlier this week, did not attend. A court spokesperson said this was “because she did not have time to fully review the documents of the parties.”
Republicans are contesting a decision by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court that extends the deadline for accepting absentee ballots by three days, November 6, so that it can be counted. Previously, ballots had to be received by 8pm on election day (Tuesday).
The action of the court means that the issue will not be resolved before the election. However, if the judge decides in favor of Republicans, votes received after Tuesday may eventually be disqualified. Pennsylvania is one of the most fierce battlefield states between President Donald Trump and the Democratic nomination Joe Biden in 2020.
On October 19, the Supreme Court rejected an earlier challenge from the Republican Party, which included states parties and lawmakers. The Supreme Court was deadlocked 4-4. Chief Justice John Roberts was with the three liberals of the court, Stephen Breyer and Judge Sonia Sotomayor. And Elena Kagan.
On October 23, the Republican Party again questioned and asked the justices to resolve the matter as soon as possible. Since then, Barrett has served on the Supreme Court, which has increased the Republican Party’s chances of winning on this issue. Barrett has already faced calls for withdrawing from election-related cases, but has not promised to do so.
In a statement written by Justice Samuel Arito on Wednesday and joined by Justices Neil Gollach and Clarence Thomas, three conservatives said that the court’s handling of the issue was “unnecessary. This creates conditions that may cause serious post-election problems.”
Alito wrote that it is “very desirable” to rule the case before the election, and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s ruling is highly likely to violate the Constitution.
He wrote: “But I reluctantly concluded that there is simply not enough time to decide the issues before the election at this later date.”
In addition to speeding up the schedule, the Republican Party also asked the Supreme Court to order Pennsylvania to retain votes received after November 3. Pennsylvania told the judge earlier Wednesday that it would do so voluntarily.
Alito wrote that nothing can prevent the Republican Party from seeking relief from the Supreme Court if it is “not satisfied” with the assurances provided by the state.
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