According to a Republican lawsuit filed, “Pennsylvania’s Democratic election leaders violated state code on Monday when they authorized county election officials to provide information about rejected mail ballots to political party operatives” reports National Review.
The lawsuit specifically refers to an email from Jonathan Marks, Pennsylvania’s deputy elections secretary. At 8:38 P.M. on Monday, Marks sent an email to county election directors which read, “county boards of elections should provide information to party and candidate representatives during the pre-canvass that identifies the voters whose ballots have been rejected” so that they could be offered a provisional ballot, reports National Review.
The Republican lawsuit was filed Tuesday against Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar, and note that only last month Pennsylvania’s supreme court stated last month that “unlike in-person voters, mail-in or absentee voters are not provided any opportunity to cure perceived defects (to their ballot) in a timely manner.”
Allegedly at least eight counties did not adhere to Marks’ email because it violates the state’s election code, according to the lawsuit. Additionally, Republicans “argue that the opportunity to cure perceived defects for ballots that overwhelmingly support Democrats is exactly what Boockvar and Marks were allowing,” writes National Review.
Thomas Breth, the lawyer who filed the suit said some county election boards gave voters names, addresses and even email addresses, along with explanations of their ballots defects to party operatives. Even some election boards were directly alerting voters that their ballots had defects and assisted the voters in fixing them.
Prior to election day, some election officials even weighed ballots to check if voters had correctly included the secrecy envelopes inside, said Breth. “It is inappropriate for individual counties to unilaterally create their own standards, their own procedures, for letting individuals come in and cure (ballots)” he added. More importantly, the state’s election code does not allow for reaching out to voters to have their ballots changed. “Changing the code would require a state assembly fix” he said.