Politics

Pennsylvania Supreme Court strikes down GOP bid to stop election certification

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Saturday rejected a last-ditch bid from Republicans including Rep. Mike KellyGeorge (Mike) Joseph KellyPennsylvania Republicans sue in last-ditch effort to stop election certification GOP Rep. Dan Newhouse tests positive for COVID-19 Colorado Democrat Ed Perlmutter tests positive for coronavirus MORE (R-Pa.) to halt the certification of the 2020 election results in the Keystone State. 

The court’s decision delivered the latest blow for Republicans, President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden adds to vote margin over Trump after Milwaukee County recount Krebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election ‘farcical’  Republicans ready to become deficit hawks again under a President Biden MORE and his campaign to overturn election results in a battleground state that President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden adds to vote margin over Trump after Milwaukee County recount Krebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election ‘farcical’  New DOJ rule could allow executions by electrocution, firing squad MORE won by over 1 percentage point. 

In an order released on Saturday night, the state supreme court vacated a preliminary order by the Commonwealth Court and dismissed the case.

“Upon consideration of the parties’ filings in Commonwealth Court, we hereby dismiss the petition for review with prejudice based upon Petitioners’ failure to file their facial constitutional challenge in a timely manner,” the order read. 

The ruling comes after state Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough on Wednesday ordered state officials to halt further steps to certify the state’s election results one day after Gov. Tom WolfTom WolfTrump says he’ll leave White House if Biden declared winner of Electoral College Trump cancels plans to attend Pennsylvania GOP event on election Biden-Harris ticket the first in US history to surpass 80 million votes MORE (D) certified the Keystone State’s results for Biden. 

Following McCullough’s order, Pennsylvania secretary of commonwealth Kathy Boockvar and Wolf appealed the order to the state supreme court. 

The latest order by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court reverses McCullough’s decision. 

Originally, an emergency petition was filed in state court last weekend by the GOP ahead of Monday’s deadline to certify election results, a process that would solidify a defeat for Trump. 

Plaintiffs including Kelly asked the court to invalidate a universal mail-in voting policy that was signed by Wolf and passed by a Republican-held legislature last year. They argued that provisions that allowed expanded mail-in voting in the state were unconstitutional, according to the order.

“As a remedy, Petitioners sought to invalidate the ballots of the millions of Pennsylvania voters who utilized the mail-in voting procedures established by Act 77 and count only those ballots that Petitioners deem to be ‘legal votes'”, the order continued. 

The rejected bid is part of a multi-state effort by Republicans and Trump allies to overturn the results of the 2020 election in favor of Trump. However, election law experts have noted that law suits pressed by the Trump campaign and its allies are not going to succeed in their intended result.

Trump has still refused to concede the election to Biden. However, the president said this week that he would leave the White House if Biden is declared the winner of the Electoral College. 

“Certainly I will. And you know that,” said Trump when asked if he would leave the White House if the Electoral College voted for Biden.

“If they do, they made a mistake,” he added. 

Updated 7:37 p.m.

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