State of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Luzerne County Election Certification Refusal

Cartwright v. Luzerne County Board of Elections

Lawsuit filed on behalf of U.S. Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pa.) against the Luzerne County Board of Elections challenging the board’s failure to certify the Nov. 8, 2022 election results. On Nov. 28, the Luzerne County Board of Elections failed to certify the county’s results as two members voted to certify, two members voted against certification and one member abstained, leaving the board deadlocked. According to the complaint, “[n]one of the Board members provided any legal citation or justification for failing to certify the election.” The plaintiff alleges that the board “already violated its statutory duty to certify the election by the third Monday following election day and will continue to do so absent this Court’s intervention.” The plaintiff argues that under Pennsylvania law “county boards are required to certify the election results they receive from their election districts after these results have been computed and canvassed” and “certification of election results by a county board of elections is a ministerial act—one which the board is required to perform and has no discretion to refuse,” as Luzerne County did here. The plaintiff requests a writ of mandamus (a court order compelling a party to take a certain action) requiring the board to certify the results of the 2022 midterm elections. On Nov. 30, the board certified the election and the lawsuit was voluntarily dismissed.

Case Documents

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