More GOP-controlled county election boards are flouting state law by refusing to certify election results — this time in Pennsylvania.
The Pennsylvania Department of State and acting Secretary of the Commonwealth Leigh Chapman filed a lawsuit on Tuesday against the boards of elections in Berks, Fayette and Lancaster counties. All three are controlled by Republicans and have refused to certify undated mail-in ballots in the state’s May 17 primary elections.
“Three boards of elections refuse to execute their mandatory duty to certify the results of the 2022 primary election based on a full and accurate count of every lawfully cast vote,” the officials wrote in the court document, which was filed in the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, per CNN.
Lancaster County officials remain defiant, claiming in a statement that “The Commonwealth’s demand is contrary to the law or any existing court order.
“The County will vigorously defend its position to follow the law to ensure the integrity of elections in Lancaster County,” the statement continued.
The standoff comes over a month after the Supreme Court ruled that Pennsylvania elections officials are allowed to include undated ballots –- that is, mail-in ballot that don’t have the date written on the return envelope as required by Pennsylvania law –- while tallying election results.
The issue of undated ballots in Pennsylvania was at the center of the state’s GOP Senate primary between now-nominee Dr. Mehmet Oz and rival David McCormick, who filed a lawsuit demanding that the ballots be included in the hand recount in the razor-thin race. McCormick ultimately conceded to Oz before the recount was completed.
Pennsylvania state officials’ lawsuit against the three counties is similar to a fight in New Mexico, where Otero County’s all-Republican commission refused to certify the state’s primary election results on the basis of ex-President Donald Trump and Co.’s lies about election fraud.
The commission eventually voted 2-1 to certify the results after the New Mexico Supreme Court ordered them to do so. The one “no” vote was from Cowboys for Trump leader Couy Griffin, who pleaded guilty to trespassing on Capitol grounds during the Jan. 6 insurrection.