Election results in PA may take several days to process

by mcardinal

Curt Flewelling, FISM News


Acting Pennsylvania Secretary of State Leigh M. Chapman warned voters that processing and counting election night ballots will likely take several days to complete and no final result will be posted on November 8 (Election Day). Her comment was made to get ahead of any speculation that a delay in reporting results means anything suspect is occurring.

Chapman told NBC’s Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd, “The best we can do is just manage expectations and let voters know that election officials need to do their job. They need to ensure that they’re counting every vote, and delays in results does not mean anything bad is happening.”

The predicted delays are largely due to the time and effort required to process mail-in ballots. This form of voting was at the epicenter of controversy after the 2020 presidential election.

Secretary Chapman’s comments were designed to allay any lingering fears that many voters may still have in the wake of the post-election chaos that ensued in 2020.

A Muhlenberg University poll conducted in 2021 showed that 40% of Pennsylvania voters were not confident that the 2020 election results accurately reflected how they voted. This prompted then Pennsylvania State Senator Doug Mastriano to initiate a forensic investigation of the 2020 election and 2021 primary.

The Republican gubernatorial candidate said at the time, “In 2020, there were 2.7 million ballots cast by mail and absentee compared with about 263,000 absentee ballots cast in 2016. Many of these ballots were counted at offset locations with little outside observation or oversight.”

He continued, “Furthermore, mail ballots without signature verification were permitted to be counted across the Commonwealth. Additionally, in the weeks leading up to the election, the Department of State repeatedly altered the manner in which Pennsylvania’s election was conducted.”

The questions surrounding mail-in voting are not going away despite Secretary Chapman’s call to let the process run its course. Ballot harvesting, unsupervised drop boxes, the lack of signature verification, and general chain of custody concerns continue to be worrisome to voters leading up to the 2022 election.

More than 1.2 million mail-in ballots have been requested across the Commonwealth. To date, roughly 556,000 (43%) have been returned.  How and when those remaining ballots are processed is of major concern to everyone in the Keystone state.