Bloomberg Law
Nov. 13, 2020, 2:19 AM

Pennsylvania Court Tosses Some Mail-In Ballots With ID Fixes (1)

Erik Larson
Erik Larson
Bloomberg News

Pennsylvania mail-in voters who took advantage of a deadline extension to provide missing proof of identification won’t have their ballots counted in the final tally.

Commonwealth Court Judge Mary Hannah Leavitt ruled Thursday that Pennsylvania Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar lacked the authority to extend the original Nov. 9 deadline for proof of ID by 3 days. The ruling means the battleground state that’s already been declared for President-elect Joe Biden can’t count ballots from voters who submitted missing identification between Nov. 10 and Nov. 12. Ballots with “cured” ID issues received before that aren’t being challenged.

President Donald Trump’s campaign sued over the extended deadline, and Leavitt previously ordered that ballots with late-arriving ID fixes be segregated. It’s not clear how many ballots fit that bill, though state officials have said suits over defective ballots can’t change the outcome of the race, in which Biden had a lead on Thursday of 55,978 votes.

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said in a statement that the ruling is “huge victory” for election integrity. She called the state’s three-day extension for providing ID “a cut and dry brazen power grab by a Democrat official trying to tip the scales in Joe Biden’s favor.”

The ruling affects “a very narrow group of voters that had up to today to provide identification,” Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, a Democrat, said in a statement.

Shapiro also responded on Twitter to Texas Senator Ted Cruz, who called the ruling an “important legal victory.”

Read More: Trump Legal Blitz Won’t Impact Pennsylvania Vote, State AG Says

(Updates with comment from the Pennsylvania attorney general.)

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Erik Larson in New York at

To contact the editors responsible for this story:
David Glovin at

Anthony Lin, Joe Schneider

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