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PNS Daily Newscast - November 25, 2020 


Feeding hungry families, on Thanksgiving and beyond; and is that turkey really from a family farm? (Note to Broadcasters: The newscast has been granted a holiday for Thanksgiving, but we'll return first thing Friday.)


2020Talks - November 25, 2020 


CORRECTED 2:30pm MST 11/25 - Linda Thomas-Greenfield would be the second Black woman in US UN Ambassador role, Susan Rice was the first. Biden nominees speak; how can social media spread less misinformation and be less polarizing. *2020Talks will not be released 11/26 & 11/27*

ACLU "Disturbed": Says SCOTUS Decision Shows Court 50-50 on Voters' Enfranchisement

Mail-in ballots postmarked on or before Election Day will be counted in Pennsylvania if they are received by Fri., Nov. 6. (Darylann Elmi/Adobe Stock)
Mail-in ballots postmarked on or before Election Day will be counted in Pennsylvania if they are received by Fri., Nov. 6. (Darylann Elmi/Adobe Stock)
October 21, 2020

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A U.S. Supreme Court ruling means mail-in ballots postmarked by Election Day will still be counted, even if they arrive up to three days after the polls close in Pennsylvania.

When the state Supreme Court ruled that, because of the COVID pandemic, extending the time for ballots to arrive at county election offices was necessary, Republicans asked the high court to overturn that ruling.

Chief Justice John Roberts joined the three liberal members of the court in a four-to-four decision, which means the State Court ruling stands.

According to Vic Walczak, Legal Director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, the extra time is warranted by the huge increase in mail-in votes in this election.

"It's a victory for voting rights, it's a victory for common sense," said Walczak. "And it's tragic that there are people in this country who would oppose this kind of practical solution."

He emphasized that mail-in ballots still must be postmarked by November 3, so people who are voting by mail need to get their ballots mailed as soon as possible.

Walczak pointed out the Pennsylvania Department of State had not wanted to extend the time for receiving mail-in ballots. But that changed in July, when the U.S. Postal Service sent a letter saying mail delivery had slowed and ballots may not arrive by Election Day.

"At that point, the Secretary of State said, 'We need to extend the deadline,'" said Walczak. "And they petitioned the court to do that, and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court agreed."

He added that in this year's primary, some 60,000 mail-in ballots arrived at county election offices in the three days after Election Day.

Walczak said he was disturbed to see the U.S. Supreme Court decision was evenly split between those who allowed the extended time for ballots to arrive, and those who opposed the extension.

"You had four justices who were willing to potentially disenfranchise thousands of voters who, through no fault of their own, don't have their ballots delivered on time," said Walczak.

He noted voters of both parties are using mail-in ballots, so making sure all ballots are counted should not be a partisan issue.

Disclosure: ACLU of Pennsylvania contributes to our fund for reporting on Civil Rights, Human Rights/Racial Justice, Immigrant Issues, LGBTQIA Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.
Andrea Sears, Public News Service - PA