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Photo: Robert Alexander/Getty Images

The Supreme Court, for the second time in two days, rejected a GOP request to shorten the deadline mail-in ballots must be received by North Carolina officials to be counted.

The state of play: The state's deadline had been extended from 3 days to 9 days post-Election Day.

The big picture: These are the latest in a series of decisions over ballot deadlines in states across the U.S. amid the coronavirus pandemic.

  • The rulings come shortly after the court rejected an effort by Wisconsin Democrats and civil rights groups to extend that state’s deadline for counting absentee ballots to six days post-Election Day.

Conservative Justices Neil Gorsuch, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito dissented in each of the decisions in a 5-3 vote.

  • As in the ruling to deny a bid from Pennsylvania Republicans to expedite their request to shorten the deadline for receiving mail-in ballots, newly confirmed Justice Amy Coney Barrett did not participate in either decisions.
  • This was "because of the need for a prompt resolution and because she has not had time to fully review the parties’ filings," the court said.

Background: A federal appeals court ruled last Wednesday that North Carolina could accept absentee ballots postmarked by Nov. 3, Election Day, until Nov. 12 because of the pandemic.

What to watch: A similar case regarding Minnesota’s extended mail-in ballot deadline is making its way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • The court has been siding with lower state courts’ decisions thus far, which would keep the extended deadline in place in Minnesota as well.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

Go deeper

Supreme Court dismisses Trump emoluments lawsuits as moot

Photo: Zach Gibson/Pool/Getty Images

The Supreme Court on Monday ordered lower courts to dismiss two cases that alleged former President Donald Trump unlawfully profited from his businesses while in office, in violation of the Constitution's emoluments clauses.

The big picture: Both sides agreed the issue had become moot after Trump's term finished on Jan. 20, according to Bloomberg, ending a prolonged legal battle that extended for most of his presidency.

The next big political war: redistricting

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Democrats are preparing a mix of tech and legal strategies to combat expected gerrymandering by Republicans, who are planning to go on legal offense themselves.

Why it matters: Democrats failed to regain a single state legislature on Election Day, while Republicans upped their control to 30 states' Houses and Senates. In the majority of states, legislatures draw new congressional district lines, which can boost a party's candidates for the next decade.

The Democrats' wake-up call

Eric Adams, a former cop who leads the New York mayoral race, speaks last night at the Schimanski nightclub in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Photo: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

Democrats, in private and public, are warning that rising crime — and the old and new progressive calls to defund the police — represent the single biggest threat to their electoral chances in 2022.

Why it matters: There has been a big spike in big-city crime, a dynamic increasingly captured in local coverage and nationally on CNN and Fox News.