“Counties are asking for a change to help them tally votes faster. But as election day nears, Pa.’s legislature hasn’t acted on a bill to make that happen”

Here’s a detailed story from local news in PA about where things stand in the legislature about changing the law to permit the processing of absentee ballots before Election Day.

“It’s been frustrating, observing that there haven’t been really any constructive discussions about this, that we can tell, in public or behind closed doors,” said Pat Christmas, policy director at nonpartisan good government think tank Committee of 70. “The time that the counties would have to process these ballots – that’s a purely administrative change that should not have any implications one way or another, on one party’s … ability to win votes or not.”

Directors have been asking to begin pre-canvassing before Election Day since April, ahead of a vote-by-mail surge predicted for the primary. At the time, lawmakers punted. They did the same thing after the June 2 primary because they wanted data to inform election code changes. They’ve since received that data

“It’s mystifying to see this train coming at us, the counties, the voters – and for the legislature not to do anything about it,” Christmas said. “If Pennsylvania happens to have electoral votes that … could be the decisive ones in a presidential election — if that is the case, we’re asking for just an incredible amount of scrutiny during election week, and potentially beyond that if some ballots are being challenged.”

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