Oct 6, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Supreme Court reinstates South Carolina absentee ballot witness rule

An image of the Supreme Court

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

The Supreme Court on Monday sided with South Carolina officials and the state's Republican Party by mostly restoring a legal requirement that absentee ballots must be signed by a witness.

Of note: Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh wrote in the judgment that ballots cast before the ruling or received within the next two days would be exempt from the order.

Driving the news: A lower court had ruled in favor of a Democratic group's challenge that the requirement would impact on voting during the coronavirus pandemic, per the New York Times.

What they're saying: "This Court has repeatedly emphasized that federal courts ordinarily should not alter state election rules in the period close to an election," Justice Brett Kavanaugh said in the ruling.

By the numbers: Over 18,000 of the 200,000 absentee ballots mailed out have been returned, per the South Carolina State Election Commission.

Read the full ruling, via DocumentCloud:

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