5 Points On Why Pennsylvania Could Become An Election Flashpoint

talkingpointsmemo.com
6 min read
fairly difficult
It's looking increasingly likely that Pennsylvania could be a focus in any post-election legal fight over who won the presidency. Already, the state has been…
It's looking increasingly likely that Pennsylvania could be a focus in any post-election legal fight over who won the presidency. Already, the state has been the site of some of the most sprawling and aggressive litigation over how voters will cast ballots during the pandemic, and one of those cases is already being teed up for a U.S. Supreme Court appeal.

President Trump narrowly won Pennsylvania in 2016, and it could very well serve as the tipping-point state that decides whether he is re-elected. Meanwhile, the COVID-19 outbreak — and the surge in vote-by-mail it has caused — has posed a particularly daunting set of challenges for the state, which before this year saw very low levels of absentee voting. So far, there hasn't been much progress in the negotiations between Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and Pennsylvania's Republican legislature over measures that could smooth out the mail balloting process.

Here's a look at the current state of play and what could be the biggest sources of controversy come Nov. 3:

The ongoing legal chaos around how to vote could confuse voters.

Many hoped that a state Supreme Court court opinion issued earlier this month would resolve the biggest disputes around this year's election rules, and give administrators the certainty they need to finish up their election planning, while refining their voter education efforts.

However, the Pennsylvania Republicans who had been involved in the state court litigation have indicated that they'll appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court a part of the state court decision. Meanwhile the Trump campaign and RNC have doubled down on trying to get the federal judiciary to rework several aspects of Pennsylvania's plans for carrying out the election.

After being put on hold while the state court litigation was wrapping up, the federal case was brought back to life earlier this month. The Trump camp filed an amended complaint that seemed aimed at keeping in flux several issues that in theory should have been…
Tierney Sneed
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