Supreme Court Says No to Wisconsin Mail-in Ballot Extension

The Supreme Court issued a divided 5-3 decision on Monday, upholding a lower federal court ruling that mail-in ballots in the state of Wisconsin must be delivered on or before Election Day in order to be counted in the general election. State Democrats had requested an extension for ballots which have postmarks by November 3, asking for a 6-day delivery extension to include those ballots in the tally. A lower federal appeals court blocked the extension, which the Supreme Court justices upheld.

The ruling came just prior to the US Senate confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. The court’s three liberal justices dissension from the order was not enough to overrule the conservative justices. With the addition of Justice Barrett, the court will maintain a conservative held majority of 6-3.

Wisconsin’s early voting started last week, with 863,006 mail-in ballots already returned as of October 19, according to the Wisconsin Elections Commission Absentee Ballot web site report. The key battleground state played a major role in electing Donald Trump in 2016. Both the president and Joe Biden have made Wisconsin a frequent stop on their 2020 campaign itineraries.