The Republican Party of Pennsylvania has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to stop the mail-in ballots counting.
These ballots are received in Pennsylvania after Election Day. The request was issued hours after Democratic nominee Joe Biden surpassed President Donald Trump in the vote tally.
Another request of the Republicans is for the Supreme Court to order the Pennsylvania secretary of state to log and classify those ballots, but to take no other action, including counting them, in the meantime.
The GOP intends to overturn an order by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court that was in effect until the normal 8 p.m. ET Election Day deadline to 5 p.m. on Friday.
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito asked Pennsylvania’s county elections boards to segregate all ballots taken in by mail after 8 p.m. Tuesday and to tally them separately from other ballots.
Alito’s order authorizes guidance issued in the past two weeks by state Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar to the counties ordering them to segregate the ballots taken in after Election Day.
However, Alito did not grant the request of the Republicans to stop the mail-in ballots counting.
Instead, he sent that question to a conference with his fellow court justices and asked that any response by the state be submitted by 2 p.m. Saturday.
The GOP wants the ballots taken in after Election Day kept distinct and not tallied so that they can be disproved as a group if its wider effort at the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the deadline extension happens.
Boockvar told CNN on Thursday that she did not agree that the ballots taken in during the deadline extension period would influence the results of the presidential race “unless it’s super close.”
Boockvar noted that the largest counties in the state accepted only around 500 ballots each after Election Day, while other smaller counties did not have any.
As of midafternoon Friday, Biden has defeated Trump by over 27,000 votes. The former vice president posted 3.33 million votes compared to 3.3 million for the current vice president. About 4% of the total vote has not yet been counted.
“Given the results of the November 3, 2020, general election, the vote in Pennsylvania may well determine the next President of the United States — and it is currently unclear whether all 67 county boards of elections are segregating late-arriving ballot,” the state GOP said in its filing with the U.S. Supreme Court.
Trump claims victory
On November 4, Trump claimed victory: “We were getting ready for a big celebration. We were winning everything, and all of a sudden it was just called off.”
“We’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court, we want all voting to stop,” Trump stressed more than an hour following the closing of the final U.S. polls in Alaska. “We don’t want them to find any ballots at 4 o’clock in the morning and add them to the list.”
CNBC states that what Trump meant by “going to the Supreme Court” remains unclear since that the country’s highest court is hardly the first judicial authority for a case, but rather, it evaluates lower court rulings.
The Trump campaign was not able to respond to CNBC’s query.
“This is a fraud on the American public. This is an embarrassment to our country,” Trump stated in his rambling statement.
“It’s a very sad moment to me, a very sad moment, and we are going to win this,” he said. “As far as I’m concerned, we already have won this, so I want to thank all of our supporters and I want to thank everybody that worked with us.”