As Democrat-led groups around the country file a flurry of lawsuits with intention of extending deadlines for counting ballots that are mailed-in, the party just found out that their efforts weren’t successful in at least one key swing state, thanks to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Monday.
According to ABC News, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to uphold a lower federal court ruling that would have given election officials in the state of Wisconsin an extra six days to count mail-in ballots after November 3. The 5-3 ruling was announced Monday in a statement from Chief Justice John Roberts.
The ruling was a surprise to many, given that last week the court upheld a ruling that allowed for a lengthy extension for counting mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania, another battleground state. However, Roberts explained that the reason for the difference in rulings on virtually the same issue resulted from how it was handled in lower courts.
In Pennsylvania, the High Court upheld the ruling that called for the extension because it came from the state’s highest court. In Wisconsin, a lower federal court ruling that allowed for an extension was later shot down by an Appeals Court, which resulted in the Supreme Court upholding the Appeals Court’s ruling.
“Different bodies of law and different precedents govern these two situations and require, in these particular circumstances, that we allow the modification of election rules in Pennsylvania but not Wisconsin,” Roberts wrote.
At the crux of the battle for and against extensions is a battle between the two parties. Republicans believe that voters have had plenty of time to cast their votes before the election, including extra early voting opportunities in many states.
Democrats have continually weaponized the COVID-19 pandemic as a tool to convince their followers that voting booths aren’t safe and that the best way to vote is by mail, arguing that because there is an increased level of mail-in voting that states should have more time to count the ballots.
In hotly-contested Wisconsin — a state that Trump won by a mere 22,748 votes in 2016 — the U.S. Elections Project indicated that as of this writing, nearly 1.1 million mail-in ballots have been returned out of 1,778,157 mail-in ballots requested by voters in the state.
Given that information, the Supreme Court’s ruling could prove to be a monumental boost for President Donald Trump’s campaign and a heavy blow to Democrats, as there’s no telling if the remainder of the mail-in ballots will make it to election officials by the November 3 deadline.