DCR Politics: Republicans sue to disqualify thousands of mail ballots in swing states.☕☕☕

Ayyyeee…What’s Goodie Everyone. So I got some tea and it involves the republican party and the mid-term elections.

Republican officials and candidates in three battleground states are pushing to disqualify thousands of mail ballots after urging their own supporters to vote on Election Day. In Pennsylvania, the state Supreme Court has agreed with the Republican National Committee that election officials should not count ballots on which the voter neglected to put a date on the outer envelope even in cases when the ballots arrive before Election Day. Thousands of ballots have been set aside as a result, enough to swing a close race.

In Michigan, the Republican nominee for secretary of state, Kristina Karamo sued the top election official in Detroit last month, seeking to toss absentee ballots not cast in person with an ID, even though that runs contrary to state requirements. When asked in a recent court hearing, Karamo’s lawyer declined to say why the suit targets Detroit, a heavily Democratic, majority Black city, and not the entire state.
And in Wisconsin, Republicans won a court ruling that will prevent some mail ballots from being counted when the required witness address is not complete.

The suits coincide with a systematic attempt by Republicans led by former president Donald Trump to persuade GOP voters to cast their ballots only on Election Day. Critics argue that the overall purpose is to separate Republicans and Democrats by method of voting and then to use lawsuits to void mail ballots that are disproportionately Democratic.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf (D) issued a statement Sunday night in which he asserted that “no voter should be disenfranchised simply because they made a minor error in filling out their ballot.”
“This was not a controversial concept in our country or our commonwealth until recently, with the rise of the Big Lie and the efforts to spread mis- and disinformation in the days leading up to the general election,” Wolf continued. “I urge counties to continue to ensure that every vote counts.”

Under Wisconsin law, an absentee voter must find a witness usually a spouse, relative or friend to attest that the voter legally completed the ballot. The witness must sign the ballot envelope and provide an address. Republicans successfully sued this year to toss guidance from the Wisconsin Elections Commission allowing local election officials to fill in incomplete witness addresses on ballots.

A Michigan judge dismissed the lawsuit by Karamo, the GOP secretary of state nominee, in a strongly worded opinion. “Plaintiffs failure to produce any evidence that the procedures for this Nov. 8 election violate state or federal election law demonizes the Detroit City Clerk, her office staff, and the 1,200 volunteers working this election,” wrote state Circuit Court Judge Timothy M. Kenny. Even though the suit was dismissed, other challenges are playing out: In recent days, county clerks across Michigan have received emails from organized groups attempting to dispute the eligibility of voters who requested or cast absentee ballots, suggesting there could be more litigation to come.

Credit: The Washington Post, New York Times, Associated Press.

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