JUST IN: Trump Campaign Files Motion to Intervene in Supreme Court Case Reviewing Deadlines For Counting Pennsylvania Ballots
As America waits for the final states to finish counting their ballots, President Donald Trump’s campaign is taking their fight to the Supreme Court, filing a motion to intervene in a pending case regarding the deadline to count mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania.
The case is an appeal from a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that allowed mail-in ballots to be accepted as late as 5:00 pm ET Friday, even if they lacked a legible postmark. The nation’s highest court had previously declined to take the case up on an expedited review, but the underlying case remains pending, and the Trump campaign’s motion is a legal request to be allowed to join the case as an interested party.
CNN’s Jake Tapper announced the news Wednesday afternoon, with Pamela Brown explaining the details from the court filing by the campaign.
“Given last night’s results, the vote in Pennsylvania may well determine the next President of the United States,” Jay Sekulow, counsel for the Trump campaign, wrote in their motion. “And this Court, not the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, should have the final say on the relevant and dispositive legal questions.”
A key part of the Trump campaign’s objection focused on the issue of whether ballots received after Election Day without a legible dated postmark should be counted.
The latest addition to the Court, Justice Amy Coney Barrett, nominated by Trump and confirmed by the Republican-controlled Senate in the final weeks before the election, is being closely watched. Barrett had declined to rule in the previous emergency motion, saying that she had not been involved in the case and had not had time to be sufficiently briefed on the legal issues. She’s viewed as much less likely to recuse herself in the case moving forward.
Ben Ginsburg, a Republican election lawyer and CNN contributor, also weighed in, calling the Trump campaign’s filings “a very procedural filing,”
“At the end of the day,” said Ginsburg, “this is more a case about the power of a state supreme court versus its legislature to set the rules…about the time, place, and manner of an election.”
Ginsburg distinguished this Pennsylvania case from the infamous Bush v. Gore case challenging the 2000 presidential recount in Florida.
As many legal experts have noted, the Supreme Court has historically granted deference to state supreme courts to interpret the laws passed by their own legislatures, but that is not without limits.
“What the state supreme court in Florida did was really rewrite rules of the game that were part of Florida legislation and they changed the rules of the game after it had been played,” he explained, and this current Pennsylvania case was a matter of whether the court’s interpretation of the state’s laws was correct.
Watch the video above, via CNN.
Have a tip we should know? firstname.lastname@example.org