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West Virginia joins 16 other GOP dominated states seeking to intervene in Pennsylvania election count

Pennsylvania Headlines

FILE – In this Feb. 19, 2019, file photo, West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey speaks at a news conference in Martinsburg, W.Va. Morrisey announced Monday, May 4, 2010, that West Virginia has reached a $3.9 million settlement with Johnson & Johnson in a lawsuit over the company’s marketing of a surgical mesh used to treat pelvic conditions in women. (Matthew Umstead/The Herald-Mail via AP, File)

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The West Virginia Attorney General has joined a multi-state coalition urging the U.S. Supreme Court to overrule a state court decision that rewrites Pennsylvania’s absentee ballot receipt deadline law.

Attorney General Patrick Morrisey says the coalition argues that under the U.S. Constitution, state legislatures must choose the point to stop receiving absentee ballots and start counting votes, not state courts such as the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

The coalition says the Pennsylvania Supreme Court improperly repealed the Commonwealth’s 50-day deadline that voters hve to return their absentee ballots prior to Election Day.

They say the Pennsylvania Supreme Court replaced it with a new postmark deadline and a three-day-after-Election-Day cutoff.

“This is a clear example of courts legislating from the bench, and the impact shakes the very core of our democracy. Pennsylvania’s legislature wrote clear instructions concerning the deadlines for absentee ballots. Now its Supreme Court has decided it knows better than elected lawmakers. We absolutely urge the U.S. Supreme Court to review this case without delay.”

West Virginia Attorney General Morrisey

Morrisey says the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling now makes it impossible for state legislatures to know in advance whether the election rules they have enacted will or will not be reimagined by courts. 

The coalition is based on a filing by the state of Oklahoma and has the support of four other states. Another attack on the Pennsylvania high court involves a suite filed by the Missouri Attorney General and has the support of nine other states.

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