In a victory for the Trump campaign and Republicans concerned about the integrity of the election, a Pennsylvania judge has ordered county elections offices to put aside provisional ballots cast on Election Day for voters who also sent absentee or mail-in ballots. Republicans are concerned tens of thousands of ballots may have been double counted.
The decision could ultimately revise a Pennsylvania vote total that puts Joe Biden in a slight lead over President Donald Trump.
A judge of Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth Court said Friday the ballots should be separated to determine the validity of the provisional ballots and whether they can be counted.
The ruling came in a lawsuit brought a group of Pennsylvania Republicans, including Mike Kelly, who was elected to a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, that have been challenging what they believe to be defective ballots.
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They accused Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar of illegally instructing county boards the evening before the election to identify voters whose ballots had been rejected, giving the parties a chance to notify them and encourage them to vote in-person using provisional ballots.
According to the suit, the instruction improperly gave some voters the opportunity to fix defective ballots and created “a scenario where some voters will cast two conflicting votes.”
The same plaintiffs have also accused officials in Montgomery County, in the Democratic-leaning Philadelphia suburbs, of helping voters “cure” ballots that should considered invalid.
In response to an order from Judge P. Kevin Brobson of the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, Phillip D. Kline, Director of the Amistad Project of the Thomas More Society, told LifeNews he was pleased with the decision.
“Today, a Commonwealth Court Judge issued a statewide order calling into question whether thousands or tens of thousands of ballots are being handled properly and fairly. The order requires the Secretary of the Commonwealth to notify each County Boards of Election to set aside those ballots so they can be lawfully reviewed to ensure that this election was properly managed. Following Judge Brobson’s wise and lawful decision, we must now allow the time it takes to ensure that the process worked and that the law was properly applied in this election,” he said.
Thomas W. King III of Dillon McCandless King Coulter & Graham L.L.P. also chimed in.
“We commend Judge Brobson and the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania for this order to Secretary of the Commonwealth Kathy Boockvar, requiring legally-cast ballots received by Election Day to be segregated from provisional ballots statewide. This will allow the proper and lawful counting of ballots across the Commonwealth to be conducted for up to 16 days. Judge Brobson’s order is a victory for the voters of Pennsylvania who are rightfully demanding that ballots be properly segregated so they can be counted by non-partisan officials under the watchful eye of both political parties and their election attorneys. While Secretary Boockvar has been resistant to comply with voting laws in this election, we fully expect her to comply with this order from the Court.”
Meanwhile, a legal group filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania alleging that the state has tens of thousands of deceased people on its voter rolls and that there is evidence of voting activity among the deceased.