Supreme Court pauses counting of challenged Pennsylvania mail-in ballots

The temporary block could impact the ongoing GOP Senate primary battle between David McCormick and Dr. Mehmet Oz.

Updated: June 1, 2022 - 1:37pm

The Supreme Court on Tuesday paused the count of some mail-in ballots that could impact the Pennsylvania Senate GOP primary race. 

The order temporarily blocks a lower court's ruling that instructed election officials to count mail-in ballots that arrived on time but were undated. 

The dispute in involves a contested 2021 judicial election but may have a broader impact on the state's ongoing Senate GOP primary between one-time TV doctor Mehmet Oz and former hedgefunder David McCormick. 

The primary battle headed to an automatic recount last week after tallies showed Oz leading McCormick by fewer than 1,000 votes. McCormick's campaign, meanwhile, filed a suit asking the state court to order that approximately 860 mail-in ballots with missing handwritten dates be counted.

The high court's Tuesday order came from Justice Samuel Alito, who handles emergency issues out of Pennsylvania. He issued an administrative stay, which will allow the court a limited amount of additional time to consider the case.

The court's decision effectively halts a decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which, last week, ruled that the undated mail-in ballots should be counted.