The Supreme Court refused October 2020 to revive a trial court ruling that would have extended Wisconsin’s deadline for receiving absentee ballots to six days after the election.
The vote was 5 to 3, with the court’s more conservative justices in the majority. As is typical, the court’s brief, unsigned order ( Shadow Docket) gave no reasons. But several justices filed concurring and dissenting opinions that spanned 35 pages and revealed a stark divide in their understanding of the role of the courts in protecting the right to vote during a pandemic.
The ruling was considered a victory for Republicans in a crucial swing state, which polls showed at th time Trump trailing in after winning by about 23,000 votes in 2016.
The Democratic Party of Wisconsin immediately announced a voter education project to alert voters that absentee ballots have to be received by 8 p.m. on Election Day, Nov. 3. “We’re dialing up a huge voter education campaign,” Ben Wikler, the state party chairman, said on Twitter. The U.S. Postal Service has recommended that voters mail their ballots by Oct. 27 to ensure that they are counted.