More than 3,400 Philly mail-in ballots at risk of being rejected


Election officials in Philadelphia said Saturday that more than 3,400 mail-in ballots are at risk of being rejected because of incorrect information, missing dates or missing secret envelopes.

Philadelphia City Commissioners Chairwoman Lisa Deeley released the names of affected voters and urged them to take immediate action to obtain replacement ballots.

Officials say the number of votes at risk will grow as more are returned.

Deeley’s action comes after the state Supreme Court on Tuesday barred local election officials from counting ballots with missing or incorrect dates on return envelopes.

On Sunday, Allegheny County also released two lists of voters, totaling more than 1,000, that were returned without a date or with an incorrect date, according to the Supreme Court order.

The U.S. Senate race that could decide control of the House is highly competitive on the ballot in this key swing state, along with a closely watched race for governor.

“I am very disappointed with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision regarding undated and improperly dated ballots,” Deeley said in a statement Saturday. “Handwritten dates are not relevant and the absence of such a date should not be grounds for disenfranchising a voter.”

Currently, more than 1,800 of the ballots marked by Philadelphia officials are missing the required date.

Philadelphia election officials said the city hall office will be open Sunday, Monday and Tuesday to help voters resolve the issue.

Allegheny County voters can register at the County Offices Building in downtown Pittsburgh on Monday and Tuesday.

Pennsylvania’s requirement that voters sign and hand-date the ballot return envelope has been the subject of litigation for months. And on Friday, several Pennsylvania groups, including the NAACP and state branches of the League of Women Voters, filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging the state’s plan to not count undated ballots.

The lawsuit calls the missing or incorrect date “a meaningless technicality” and claims that throwing out the ballot on those grounds violates federal civil rights law.