WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused a plea from Pennsylvania’s GOP to speed-up a hearing on their request to halt a three-day extension for mail-in ballot counting.
The bench last week upheld a lower court decision that Keystone State ballots be counted up to three days after Election Day, shooting down Republican opposition to the extension.
Wednesday’s decision means that the appeal from Republicans likely won’t be considered until after the presidential election, making the challenge essentially moot. The court did not provide any reason.
Newly-minted Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who was sworn into office at the White House on Monday evening, could have broken the 4-4 deadlock in the SCOTUS ruling but did not cast a vote because she did not have enough time to consider the case, a court spokesman told the New York Times.
Republicans, including President Trump, backed the challenge to Pennsylvania court’s ruling, arguing it violates election law that states Election Day is the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November.
With the extension, ballots postmarked by the time polls close on Nov. 3 can be counted by 5 p.m. on Nov. 6.
The battleground state is being fiercely contested by both campaigns after Pennsylvanians broke for Trump by just 44,000 votes.
Democratic nominee Joe Biden is leading Trump by 3.8 percentage points, according to the RealClearPolitics average of polls as of Wednesday.
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