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Matt Slocum / APChester County election workers process mail-in and absentee ballots for the 2020 general election in the United States at West Chester University on Nov. 4, 2020, in West Chester, Pennsylvania. (Matt Slocum / AP)
After the state appealed her ruling to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, a commonwealth judge is defending her decision to order a temporary halt to any actions to certify the state’s 2020 presidential election results pending a hearing on a lawsuit that seeks to void millions of potentially unconstitutional mail-in ballots.
Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough issued a memorandum opinion on Friday explaining her rationale in temporarily stopping the state’s actions to certify its 2020 election results until the lawsuit is heard.
The lawsuit filed by a group of Pennsylvania Republicans, led by Rep. Mike Kelly and 2020 congressional candidate Sean Parnell, claims Pennsylvania’s October 2019 expansion of “no-excuse” mail-in voting “violated the state constitution’s limits on who can cast an absentee ballot,” Law360 reported.
“Petitioners appear to have established a likelihood to succeed on the merits because Petitioners have asserted the Constitution does not provide a mechanism for the legislature to allow for expansion of absentee voting without a constitutional amendment,” McCullough wrote Friday.
Commonwealth court never had jurisdiction to begin with, because the statute also conferred original jurisdiction on Supreme Court to consider any challenges. But if Commonwealth Court had original jurisdiction, the appeal to the Supreme Court would have been as of right.
— Robert L. Byer (@Rlbyer) November 26, 2020
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