Pennsylvania judge issues order preventing election certification pending Friday hearing

Today a Pennsylvania judge issued an order preventing the state from taking additional steps to certify its election results until she holds a hearing on Friday morning.

The ruling on Wednesday by Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough in Pittsburgh halts the process “to the extent that there remains any further action to perfect the certification of the results of the 2020 General Election.” Secretary of the Commonwealth Kathy Boockvar certified President-elect Joe Biden’s 80,555-vote Pennsylvania victory yesterday, and Governor Tom Wolf appointed electors for the state. Boockvar and Wolf are both Democrats.

Separate from the federal lawsuit by President Donald Trump’s campaign, the state case was brought by Pennsylvania Republicans led by U.S. Representative Mike Kelly, who is arguing that the state’s expansion of mail-in voting was illegal.

McCullough set a hearing for 11:30 a.m. on Friday.

The plaintiffs argued an injunction could still be issued even though the certification had taken place, pointing out that a number of formal steps remained, including issuing commissions to elected candidates. The state’s “duties with regard to finalization of the full election results are far from complete,” they said in a motion on Tuesday.