The Supreme Court of the United States recently declined to consider several cases that challenged a Pennsylvania Supreme Court's decision allowing relaxed "ballot-integrity measures." That includes extending the deadline for ballots by three days, shortly before the November 3rd presidential election.
Justice Clarence Thomas authored a dissent to the decision:
These cases provide us with an ideal opportunity to address
just what authority nonlegislative officials have to set election
rules, and to do so well before the next election cycle.
The refusal to do so is inexplicable.
An election system lacks clear rules when, as here, different
officials dispute who has authority to set or change
those rules. This kind of dispute brews confusion because
voters may not know which rules to follow. Even worse,
with more than one system of rules in place, competing candidates
might each declare victory under different sets of
That is not a prescription for confidence. Changing theJustice Clarence Thomas dissent, 2/22/21
rules in the middle of the game is bad enough. Such rule
changes by officials who may lack authority to do so is even
worse. When those changes alter election results, they can
severely damage the electoral system on which our self-governance so heavily depends. If state officials have the
authority they have claimed, we need to make it clear. If
not, we need to put an end to this practice now before the
consequences become catastrophic.
Justices Samuel Alito and Neil Gorsuch joined Justice Thomas in the dissent.