The US Supreme Courtroom rejects Reuters’ Republican problem to Biden’s victory in Pennsylvania
© Reuters. US President-elect Joe Biden announces members of his health team in Wilmington, Delaware
By Lawrence Hurley
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The US Supreme Court on Tuesday declared a defeat against Republicans attempting to throw up to 2.5 million postal ballots in Pennsylvania to reverse President Donald Trump’s loss of the election. The judges refuse to block the state from formalizing the victory of President-elect Joe Biden.
The court in a brief decision denied a motion by US Congressman Mike Kelly, an ally of Trump, and other Pennsylvania Republicans who filed a lawsuit after the November 3 election, on the grounds that the mail was being expanded -In voting in 2019 was illegal under state law.
Pennsylvania was one of the key states in the elections. Biden, a Democrat, defeated Trump after the Republican President won the state in 2016. State officials had already confirmed the election results.
There has been no significant disagreement from any of the judges on the court, which has a Conservative majority of 6-3, including three Trump-appointed people. Trump had asked the Republican-led Senate to re-approve his youngest candidate, Justice Amy Coney Barrett, before election day so that she could participate in all election-related cases.
Trump has falsely claimed he won re-election and has made unsubstantiated claims of widespread electoral fraud in states like Pennsylvania. Democrats and other critics have accused Trump of lowering public confidence in the integrity of the US election and undermining democracy by trying to undermine the will of voters.
“This election is over. We have to keep stopping this circus of ‘lawsuits’ and moving forward,” Pennsylvania Democratic Attorney General Josh Shapiro wrote on Twitter.
The Supreme Court must also decide what to do with another election case launched Tuesday. Republican-ruled Texas, hoping to help Trump, made unusual efforts to reverse election results in Pennsylvania and three other states – Georgia, Michigan and Wisconsin – by filing a lawsuit against them directly in the Supreme Court.
Republican plaintiffs argued that the universal “no-apuse” mailing program, which was passed in 2019 by the Republican-controlled legislature in Pennsylvania, which allowed voters to post ballots for any reason, was against the state’s constitution.
Biden won Pennsylvania by 80,000 votes and received a much higher percentage of mail-in votes than Trump. This year, many more people voted by mail because of health concerns about the coronavirus pandemic to avoid crowds at polling stations.
Prior to the election, Trump urged supporters not to vote through the mail and made unsubstantiated claims that mail-in voting – a longstanding feature of the American election – was fraudulent.
Pennsylvania said in a lawsuit that the Republican challengers called on judges to undertake “one of the most dramatic, disruptive conjurations of justice” in US history by nullifying the confirmation of a state’s election results.
The state said most of what the challengers were looking for was controversial because the election results had already been confirmed and they were genuinely wanted, “the court turned the election results upside down.”
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismissed the lawsuit on Nov. 28 on the grounds that the lawsuit was not filed in time for the Mail-In Voting Act to first pass. It issued a lower court ruling instructing the state not to confirm the election pending a hearing.
Trump’s campaign and his allies lost in a number of key state lawsuits that Biden won, including Georgia, Michigan, Wisconsin and others. The judges have rejected sweeping allegations of voting irregularities.
Biden garnered 306 votes – more than 270 – compared to 232 for Trump on the electoral college, which determines the election result, while also winning the national referendum with more than 7 million votes.
Tuesday represents a “safe harbor” period established by US law of 1887 to allow states to confirm the results of the presidential election. Meeting the deadline is not mandatory, but it does provide the assurance that a state’s outcomes will not be questioned by Congress.
After that deadline, Trump could still pursue lawsuits to undo Biden’s victory, but efforts would become even more difficult.