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U.S. Supreme Court permits crucial vote counting extension in Pennsylvania

A view of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington.   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

In a victory for Democrats, the Supreme Court of the United States declined to stay a Pennsylvania Supreme Court order allowing some postal ballots received for up to three days after Election Day (November 3) to be tallied provided they are postmarked by November 3. Republicans had approached the U.S.’s top court for an emergency stay on the extended counting period — a special accommodation for the pandemic.

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Both U.S. President Donald Trump and his Democratic opponent Joe Biden are hoping to win this crucial swing state which Mr. Biden is leading overall, as per polls. Mr Trump won the state by less than a percentage point in 2016.

A stay on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court order permitting extended counting would have needed the assent of at least five U.S. Supreme Court judges. With Chief Justice John Roberts siding with the liberal judges, the bench was tied four and four. As is normal for emergency rulings , no reasoning was provided by the court.

The ruling renews focus on how election-related judgements will go with a new potential justice — Amy Coney Barrett ( a Trump nominee) — who could be confirmed by the U.S. Senate as early as next week in time for the elections.

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Printable version | Nov 27, 2020 12:53:41 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/us-supreme-court-permits-crucial-vote-counting-extension-in-pennsylvania/article32897533.ece

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