Harrisburg, Pa. -- Secretary of State Kathy Boockvar today reported that the canvass by counties of ballots cast in the Nov. 3 general election is nearing completion.
"We are extremely grateful to all 67 counties who have been working overtime and putting in an extraordinary effort to count every vote, with so far more than 6.8 million votes having been counted," Secretary Boockvar said. "The counties continue to adjudicate and count the approximately 100,000 provisional ballots issued to voters at the polls on Election Day, as well as the more than 28,000 military and overseas ballots that were cast in this election."
Under state law, county boards of election must individually adjudicate each provisional ballot and assess whether they meet the standards for counting. The counties do so by verifying the voter was registered to vote in the precinct in which the ballot was cast, and that the voter did not cast a mail-in ballot prior to requesting the provisional ballot at the polling place.
Higher numbers of provisional ballots were cast this year due to new laws and procedures created pursuant to two bipartisan election reform measures, Act 77 of 2019 and Act 12 of 2020.
As of Friday midday, approximately 40,000 of the provisional ballots cast have been counted or partially counted, and these numbers will continue to climb over the next few days.
The department also reported that 28,529 military and overseas absentee ballots were cast. November 10 was the deadline for counties to receive uniformed and overseas civilian absentee (UOCAVA) ballots.
Based on the unofficial returns submitted by all the counties to the Department of State, Secretary Boockvar has determined that she will not be ordering a recount and recanvass of the election returns in the counties, as no statewide candidate was defeated by one-half of one percent or less of the votes cast. This includes the following races: President of the United States, Attorney General, Auditor General, and State Treasurer.
Approximately 10,000 mail ballots that were cast on or before Nov. 3 were received by counties between 8 p.m. November 3 and 5 p.m. Nov. 6. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled in September that counties should count mail ballots received through 5 p.m. Friday, Nov. 6, if they are postmarked by 8 p.m. Election Day. The court also ruled that counties should count those ballots if there is an illegible or missing postmark, unless there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the ballot was mailed after Election Day deadline. These ballots are not of a sufficient number to impact the no-recount determination of any of the statewide races.
Up-to-date election returns showing votes cast as reported from each county can be found on the department's voting website, votesPA.com. Additionally, the new dashboard at votesPA.com/Counting provides the numbers of mail and absentee ballots cast, counted, and remaining to be counted in each county; the in-person precincts counted; and provisional ballot counts.
MEDIA CONTACT: Wanda Murren, 717-783-1621
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