Pennsylvania Supreme Court throws out GOP campaign lawsuit deemed ‘likely to succeed’ by judge
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court threw out a lawsuit from GOP Rep. Mike Kelly and failed Republican congressional candidate Sean Parnell, among others.
The state’s highest court dismissed the suit on Saturday evening that sought to vacate all mail-in ballots claiming that the legislature passed the laws that expanded their use unconstitutionally. They ruled that the group of Republicans failed to “file their facial constitutional challenge in a timely manner,” given the law was passed more than a year ago.
“At the time this action was filed on November 21, 2020, millions of Pennsylvania voters had already expressed their will in both the June 2020 Primary Election and the November 2020 General Election and the final ballots in the 2020 General Election were being tallied, with the results becoming seemingly apparent,” the justices wrote.
They called the lawsuit “beyond cavil,” and they said that ruling in the Republicans’ favor “would result in the disenfranchisement of millions of Pennsylvania voters.”
Trump campaign lawyer Jenna Ellis responded to the news on Twitter, saying, “This has become a ridiculous political game. If Kelly had challenged the statute BEFORE the election, the court would have thrown out the suit saying there was no injury in fact. This is a fight for the very integrity of our entire system. Article II!!”
The judge’s ruling came days after Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed off on the certification of President-elect Joe Biden as the winner of the state and its 20 electoral votes.
Earlier this week, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Judge Patricia McCullough demanded state officials stop any additional steps toward certifying the election results and deemed the lawsuit brought on “likel[y] to succeed on the merits.”
This was another lawsuit from either the Trump campaign or GOP operatives seeking to do the impossible — figure out a way to win four more years for President Trump, who hasn’t conceded, even though Biden has started his transition.
“Free, fair elections are the lifeblood of our democracy,” Bibas wrote for the three-judge panel. “Charges of unfairness are serious. But calling an election unfair does not make it so. Charges require specific allegations and then proof. We have neither here.”
In another attempt to stop the certification, 26 GOP state representatives introduced a resolution calling for “the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the Governor to withdraw or vacate the certification of presidential electors and to delay certification of results in other statewide electoral contests voted on at the 2020 General Election.”
Despite their effort, the legislative session ends on Monday, and Republican House Speaker Bryan Cutler, who did not co-sponsor the resolution, has not scheduled a time to consider the resolution before the end of the session, according to Penn Live.
Biden won the election with 306 Electoral College votes to Trump’s 232. It appears that the former vice president won a handful of states that the president won four years ago, including Pennsylvania, Arizona, Georgia, Wisconsin, and Michigan.
In addition to this suit, the Trump campaign claimed that there were irregularities and widespread voter fraud and that election officials committed inappropriate offenses that call the results into question, but most of its lawsuits have failed.
Despite the bleak results, Ellis expressed a positive outlook that Bibas’s decision will allow the team to go to the Supreme Court, and White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said that “there’s optimism” within the campaign.
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