Pennsylvania court strikes down state’s mail voting law as unconstitutional


A Pennsylvania court on Friday ruled the state’s mail-in voting law is unconstitutional, with the case likely heading to the state’s Supreme Court.

The 2019 law allows any voter to vote by mail without providing a reason and contains a number of other provisions aimed at making it easier to cast a ballot. Republicans are arguing it violates an amendment to the state constitution.

Commonwealth Court Judge Mary Hannah Leavitt agreed with that argument, writing the law violates the 1838 amendment that says a person must vote in-person on Election Day unless they meet certain criteria. She wrote the law can only be changed through another constitutional amendment.

“No-excuse mail-in voting makes the exercise of the franchise more convenient and has been used four times in the history of Pennsylvania,” Leavitt wrote.

“If presented to the people, a constitutional amendment to end the Article VII, Section 1 requirement of in-person voting is likely to be adopted. But a constitutional amendment must be presented to the people and adopted into our fundamental law before legislation authorizing no-excuse mail-in voting can ‘be placed upon our statute books’,” she added.

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