Supreme Court Rejects Request to Block Pennsylvania From Certifying Election Results

December 8, 2020 Updated: December 9, 2020

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a request for injunctive relief filed by Pennsylvania lawmakers and candidates contesting the election results in the commonwealth.

In the order (pdf), the nation’s top court denied the emergency application for injunctive relief that asks the court to block the state from taking further steps to certify the 2020 election results. The justices did not provide any comments and there were no noted dissents.

The court also did not address the request to review the case in its order. The plaintiffs had asked the court (pdf) to treat their application for injunctive relief as a petition for a writ of certiorari, which is a request to the court to review the lower court decision on its merits.

Attorney Greg Teufel told The Epoch Times that the plaintiffs will file a separate petition for a writ of certiorari with a request to expedite the case in due course. He said that there are two parts to the application: to prevent Act 77—the state law in question—from being used in future elections, and to also obtain relief for the 2020 election.

The case centered around a piece of legislation that erased the requirement for people voting by mail to have a reason why they couldn’t vote in person. Plaintiffs argued it was implemented illegally and clashed with the state’s constitution despite not being passed by constitutional amendment.

A Pennsylvania judge last month said the plaintiffs would likely succeed and blocked the state from certifying the results of the election but the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down the injunction days later, leading to the showdown before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Earlier Tuesday, election lawyers representing Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration urged the Supreme Court to reject the lawsuit.

“No court has ever issued an order nullifying the governor’s certification of presidential election results,” the lawyers added, arguing that it could set a precedent for the “judicial invalidation” of a presidential election.

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, a George W. Bush nominee, was in charge of the case. The full order from the court stated, “The application for injunctive relief presented to Justice Alito and by him referred to the Court is denied.”

Epoch Times Photo
U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Alito speaks at Georgetown University in Washington on Feb. 23, 2016. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The order came hours after the state of Texas filed a suit straight to the Supreme Court, alleging Pennsylvania, Georgia, Michigan, and Wisconsin unconstitutionally changed election laws, treated voters unequally, and triggered significant voting irregularities by relaxing ballot-integrity measures.

“The states violated statutes enacted by their duly elected legislatures, thereby violating the Constitution. By ignoring both state and federal law, these states have not only tainted the integrity of their own citizens’ vote, but of Texas and every other state that held lawful elections. Their failure to abide by the rule of law casts a dark shadow of doubt over the outcome of the entire election. We now ask that the Supreme Court step in to correct this egregious error,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement.

Officials from the defendant states disputed the claims in the lawsuit.

In an emailed statement, Georgia Deputy Attorney General Jordan Fuchs said: “The allegations in the lawsuit are false and irresponsible. Texas alleges that there are 80,000 forged signatures on absentee ballots in Georgia, but they don’t bring forward a single person who this happened to. That’s because it didn’t happen.”

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel called the motion “a publicity stunt, not a serious legal pleading.”

Janita Kan, Jack Phillips, and Ivan Pentchoukov contributed to this report.

The article has been updated for clarity with information from the plaintiff’s attorney.

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