Pennsylvania

Keystone State

Motto:
Virtue, Liberty and Independence


Constitution

Pennsylvania has been considered pivotal in determining who wins the Presidential Election. In 2016, the state voted for Donald Trump, despite polls favoring Hillary Clinton by significant margins. In 2020, Real Clear Politics gave Biden a 1.2% edge over Trump in its final average of polls. At the final Presidential debate, Biden said he would stop fracking and Trump leaned into that statement throughout the rest of the election season. However, there were some questionable changes made by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court that potentially tilted the outcome for Biden.

In October 2019, the PA State Legislature enacted Act 77 that permitted, for the first time, no excuse mail-in voting for every registered PA voter. It included a provision to move the long-held deadline to receive absentee and mail-in ballots from 5PM on the Friday before Election Day to 8PM on Election Day. However, the PA Supreme Court, and not the legislature, rewrote the law, allowing for ballots received after the 8PM deadline to be counted for an additional three days. Not only was the deadline extension technically invalid, the late ballots were accepted even without a postmark. This has been basis for much of the litigation around vote totals in Pennsylvania.

With 99% of the vote in, Joe Biden’s lead over Donald Trump was 82,000 votes or 1.2 percentage points.

Election Integrity

In the wake of the 2020 elections and resulting lack of confidence in the outcome, state legislatures across the country reviewed their election laws and proposed and/or enacted certain modifications to existing law. While our country remains bitterly divided, a battle is taking place as to whether these laws suppress the vote or expand access to the ballot box. Many believe claims of voter suppression from the Left are part of a larger effort to federalize our elections. But the U.S. Constitution grants state legislatures authority to establish state election laws.

Learn more about state election law reforms and decide for yourself. Do you want bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. controlling local elections or do you want your state lawmakers to write laws that meet your state’s unique characteristics?

Absentee Ballot Application

 Pre-COVIDDuring 20202021 Legislative Activity
ExcuseIllness, absence, election official, and religious reasons. No excuse needed by Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision. HB25

IN HOUSE

Page 13

Seeks to eliminate no-excuse absentee ballots.
AutomaticBy requestNo changeNo legislative movement
DeadlineSeven (7) days before election. No changeNo legislative movement.
Valid for X# of CyclesSame cycle except by request. No change No legislative movement

Legislative Ratings

The American Conservative Union Foundation rates all members of the legislature to track how they vote on key legislation. A high rating reflects a more conservative voting record.

Pennsylvania averages a 56% rating, reflecting its more centrist position. Visit their ratings page to learn more about individual voting and why ACU opposed or supported the legislation.