Retired Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz told Newsmax TV on Monday the Trump campaign probably has the correct legal argument disputing for late arriving absentee ballots in Pennsylvania, but it will matter where there are enough of them to change the outcome of the vote.
Dershowitz endorsed the notion in a question by “American Agenda” host Bob Sellers that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court was wrong in its decision to allow Pennsylvania executive branch officials to count ballots that arrived as many as three days after election day because of the novel coronavirus outbreak. State law requires ballots arrive by election day.
“That’s a very sound legal argument, and it would probably prevail in the United States Supreme Court,” Dershowitz said. “In other words, the legal issue may very well be on the side of President Trump in Pennsylvania. The question is whether the numbers will make a difference.”
Dershowitz explained if 20,000 votes came in after election day, but Democratic nominee Joe led by 40,000 then the 20,000 would not matter.
He supported his position by noting Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, who handles emergency matters for Pennsylvania, ordered state officials Friday to segregate ballots that arrived after 8 p.m. Tuesday from those that arrived earlier.
The U.S. Supreme Court already has heard an appeal from Pennsylvania Republicans before the election about the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision and voted 4-4, meaning the state court’s decision stood.
The Pennsylvania Republicans asked the court to reconsider their decision, which remained unchanged, but Alito wrote at the time, the matter could be revisited after the election.
The Pennsylvania GOP asked the court again Friday to halt the counting of late ballots. With Justice Amy Coney Barrett having joined the court subsequently, it would give the court an odd number of justices to settle the matter.
Last week, an official in Lancaster County – a largely rural country between Philadelphia and Harrisburg – caused a stir when he said their election officials were setting aside votes that arrived after Tuesday despite the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s ruling.
Pennsylvania Secretary of the Commonwealth Kathy Boockvar initially instructed officials to segregate late ballots but then reversed that order and mandated they be counted.
But Lancaster County Board of Commissioners Ray D’Agostino said his county was adhering to the original guidance.
“There’s no good way, once they’re counted, to uncount them in case the Supreme Court states otherwise,” he said.
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