A federal appeals court on Tuesday upheld North Carolina’s plan to count missing ballots arriving after election day at a loss for President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden holds huge monetary advantage over Trump before tax records Data show Trump maintains Chinese bank account: NYT Trump releases video of Biden, Harris talks about fracking at Pennsylvania rally MOREcampaign.
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“All ballots must still be mailed on or before election day,” Judge James Winn wrote, according to Reuters.
“The change is simply an extension from three to nine days after election day for the timely receipt and counting of the ballot. That’s all, ‘he continued.
North Carolina typically counts absentee ballots that arrive within three days of the election, but the state election council agreed last month to extend the rule to nine days due to a jump in absentee ballots during the coronavirus pandemic.
The campaign of the president, the Republican Party of North Carolina and other groups sued the plan.
Trump’s campaign is appealing the case in federal court after U.S. District Judge William Austin confirmed the plan last week. Campaign lawyers say the extension “risks another excuse for delaying voters to wait and possibly miss the postmark deadline,” Reuters reported, adding that they also say the rule undermines state law.
All three dissenting judges in Tuesday’s ruling were appointed Republicans. However, the three Trump-appointed district courts voted along with the court’s democratic appointments, Politico noted.
Judges who opposed Tuesday’s ruling called on the plaintiffs to appeal the case to the Supreme Court, calling for clarity as groups continue to challenge U.S. state selection rules.
A record number of voters will vote by mail this year amid fears of an ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Democratic and Republican groups have launched lawsuits across the country over voting rules and ballot guidelines.