The Supreme Court has thrown out the remainder of the 2020 election lawsuits that challenged electoral law and the results of the general election.
This decision comes after former President Donald Trump had conceded the election, allowing for a peaceful transfer of power to the now President Joe Biden.
The ruling came despite numerous Supreme Court Justices choosing to dissent over the decision, who argued numerous different cases to the Court to consider.
These Justices included; Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas, and Neil Gorsuch.
Why did Thomas dissent?
Numerous Justices decided to dissent against the Supreme Court, all with their own reasons, but the underlying common denominator between them was that they believed the Supreme Court had the chance to clarify, clear as day, the state of the election laws throughout the country.
Justice Thomas argued this very case, citing that the Constitution of the United States allows each state to determine how federal elections are conducted, yet then went onto point out that these rules were manipulated, with ‘non-legislative state officials’ taking the decisions on themselves to alter the rules in each state, which then resulted in a large number of challenges against the election results.
Thomas then moved onto argue that cases in Pennsylvania proved the perfect example of his point, with two cases brought before the Supreme Court regarding electoral law, those being Jake Corman v. Pennsylvania Democratic Party and Republican Party of Pennsylvania v. Veronica DeGraffenreid.
He claims that these cases presented a ‘clear example’ of why the Supreme Court should rule regarding election laws, to put the issue to bed once and for all.
Thomas states the legislature for the State of Pennsylvania had set a ‘clear deadline’ of 8 pm for any citizens in the state to send in their mail-in ballots for the election.
The State Supreme Court of Pennsylvania then overruled this, extending the deadline by three days.
He argued that although the change in rules may not have had an effect on this election, in the future, these rules may be abused by members who are not officials for the state legislature, meaning the chances of electoral fraud will be very, very high.
Why did Alito dissent?
Justice Alito, alongside Justice Gorsuch; who was President Trump’s first nominee to the Supreme Court, both dissented in a joint letter.
The two Justices posed a question, arguing that the two cases in Pennsylvania made it a constitutional necessity for this question to be answered; which is to determine whether or not elections in a state are violated when a state court rules that a state constitutional provision is overriding a state statute whilst they govern the way that elections are conducted.
They argue that this issue has ‘divided the lower courts’, insisting that the Supreme Court now needs to address it and declare a ruling.
Alito also argues that now the 2020 election has been decided, with President Biden now in office, there is ‘no reason’ why the Supreme Court cannot provide an answer to said question, whilst dismissing the poorly backed argument that this issue only popped up due to the pandemic, stating that this does not present any ongoing issues.
Alito continued to argue that the two Pennsylvania cases were not moot as the Supreme Court claimed them to be, citing that the Primary elections for Pennsylvania’s congressional candidates are not too far away, meaning that the Supreme Court needs to rule on this issue to avoid further confusion when we exit the Covid-19 pandemic.