The Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismissed the Parnell-Kelly case against mail-in voting, but not on substance. They claimed it came too late. The narrow ruling ignored the strong constitutional arguments.
The ruling intended to keep it from making it to the Supreme Court. This is a state case in their view and only a state case.
Constitutional attorney Mark Levin responded, “Stalinism lives.”
John Reeves, Esq. of Reeves Law, analyzed the case and made a great case for the US Supreme Court to pick it up.
The Pennsylvania mail-in voting was likely unconstitutional, and the court avoided the question completely, Reeves says.
The General Assembly did pass the legislation to expand mail-in balloting. Still, they themselves admitted it violated their own constitution and likely needed a constitutional amendment to meet the law.
Their constitution only allows absentee balloting for (1) work; (2) illness; (3) physical disability; (4) the election occurring on a religious holiday; or (5) a person’s election-day duties themselves preventing the person from voting in person. NO OTHER EXCEPTIONS!
In terms of what happens next, Reeves writes:
If other lawsuit litigation is any predictor, Parnell and the other voters will now seek an expedited petition for a writ of certiorari. They will most likely also apply to Justice Alito—as Circuit Justice for the Third Circuit—for an emergency injunction barring the Pennsylvania Secretary of State from certifying the results of the election pending resolution of the cert petition. To obtain the Court’s review, Parnell and the other voters must show that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision somehow violates federal law. While the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision is rooted in state law, a good argument can be made that it involves a federal question.
Mr. Reeves cites a precedent-setting case of sound reasoning:
In interpreting the legislative power within the context of selecting Presidential Electors, the Supreme Court of the United States has held, “What is forbidden or required to be done by a state is forbidden or required of the legislative power under the state constitutions as they exist.” McPherson v. Blacker, 146 U.S. 1, 25 (1892).
In other words:
In other words, the “legislative power” to select Presidential Electors includes those limitations that state constitutions place on its legislatures—in this case, the Pennsylvania state constitution’s limiting of absentee voting to the above five situations. This may constitute a viable federal question for the Supreme Court of the United States to intervene. And while McPherson dates from 1892, its rationale is sound, and the Court has cited it as recently as 2015. See Ariz. State Legislature v. Ariz. Indep. Redistricting Comm’n, 576 U.S. 787, 839 (2015).
It may yet go to the Supreme Court of the United States.