State of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania State Senate Primary Mail-in Ballot Challenge

Dondiego v. Lehigh County Board of Elections

Lawsuit filed on behalf of Lehigh and Northampton Counties voters whose mail-in ballots were rejected in the Democratic primary for state Senate District 14. 260 mail-in ballots were allegedly rejected in these counties for either missing an outer “secrecy” envelope (117 ballots) or because election offices didn’t receive the ballots until after 8 p.m. on Election Day, even if the ballots were mailed on time and the delay was caused by the U.S. Postal Service (143 ballots). The complaint argues that rejecting these ballots for an “immaterial defect” unrelated to voters’ eligibility violates the First and 14th Amendments and the Materiality Provision of the Civil Rights Act. The plaintiffs ask that the court issue immediate relief ordering the two counties to count these previously-rejected ballots in the final certification. The counties were ordered “not to finally certify the returns in the 2022 Democratic Primary for State Senate District 14 and any other races for which the issues raised in this litigation may be outcome-determinative during the pendency of this litigation.” The case was dismissed after the parties reached an agreement and requested that the court dismiss the case.

Case Documents

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