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Order in the Court – GOP Primary Candidates Lawyer up

Dave McCormick filed a lawsuit Monday trying to give his campaign an edge up in the too close to call race against Dr. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania. Currently, the Trump-endorsed candidate, Dr. Oz, leads McCormick by less than 1,000 votes. As the candidates lawyer up and fight for every ballot, it’s becoming clear that it could be weeks before this primary is finally wrapped up.

NBC NEWS: McCormick sues to boost Pa. mail-in votes in tight Senate GOP primary

Dareh Gregorian; May, 23 2022

Republican Senate candidate Dave McCormick filed a lawsuit Monday in a bid to ensure certain mail-in ballots aren’t disqualified from last week’s Pennsylvania primary, in which his fight against Mehmet Oz remains too close to call.

McCormick, in papers filed in the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, said a number of county boards of election are refusing to count ballots that arrived in time for the primary but were missing handwritten dates on the envelopes.

“These ballots were indisputably submitted on time—they were date-stamped upon receipt—and no fraud or irregularity has been alleged,” the suit says, adding that boards are refusing to count them because of the technicality.

While state law says voters using absentee ballots have to “fill out, date and sign” the exterior mailing envelopes, the suit notes that the state Supreme Court has previously ruled in favor of counting such ballots and that a federal appeals court ruled Friday in a different state race that rejecting ballots on a slight technicality is against federal law.

“Both the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit have held that mail-in ballots should not be disqualified simply because the voters failed to hand write a date on the exterior mailing envelope of their ballots. Because all ballots are time stamped by the County Boards of Elections on receipt, a voter’s handwritten date is meaningless,” Chuck Cooper, McCormick’s chief legal counsel, said in a statement.

It’s unclear how many ballots would be affected. McCormick has been faring better in mail-in voting than Oz, a celebrity TV doctor endorsed by former President Donald Trump, an outspoken vote-by-mail critic.

The latest NBC News election results show Oz leading McCormick, a former hedge fund manager, by less than 1,000 votes.

Photo: Nate Smallwood/Bloomberg via Getty Images

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