Republicans Ask Court To Order Delaware Not To Count Mail-In Ballots
A Republican Party attorney brazenly asked a Delaware judge on Thursday to order the state not to count any mail-in ballots cast in the 2020 election, according to Delaware Online.
- Republicans have challenged Delaware’s universal vote-by-mail system, created by lawmakers under the state Constitution’s emergency powers in response to the pandemic.
- The new vote-by-mail system allows any voter to cast a mail-in ballot for the primary, general, or special elections in 2020.
- When Vice Chancellor Sam Glasscock III asked attorney Julia Klein what she wanted him to do, Klein hesitated before calling on the judge to order "the Department of Elections not to count any vote by mail" ballots.
"To spoil those ballots," the judge interjected. "You want those ballots spoiled!"
In its suit, the state GOP notes the Delaware Constitution allows the General Assembly to use its stated emergency powers only when it is necessary to maintain the "continuity of state and local governmental operations."
- Republicans claim the system “hardly is necessary” because absentee ballots are sufficient for those unable to vote in person, which includes people who can't go to the polls due to "sickness, physical disability, religion, vacation or because they work in exempted fields, such as the military."
- Delaware Attorney General Kathleen Jennings countered that the system keeps Delaware voters from facing a “draconian choice” of risking their health or not voting amid the pandemic.
- Klein tried to argue that voters potentially could be disenfranchised by the new system, because they might fail to sign their ballots or unknowingly make other errors that would see their votes dismissed.
- However, "Glasscock asserted that Republicans do not appear concerned about disenfranchisement, given their remedy is to toss out "100 percent" of ballots sent through the new vote by mail system."
“What you're concerned about is not that people will not be able to have their votes counted – you're quite willing to have people's votes not recorded,” he said. “You're trying to vindicate the Constitution itself in the abstract. This is not about voting rights.”
Glasscock said he would announce a ruling on Monday on the Republican’s motion for summary judgment, which is effectively a request for an expedited ruling in their favor.