North Carolina GOP again asks Supreme Court to block mail ballot extension

North Carolina Republicans on Wednesday filed a second request to the Supreme Court asking justices to block a six-day mail ballot due date extension in the key battleground state.

The latest effort seeks the reversal of North Carolina's top state court, while a similar petition filed last week by President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump goes after Cassidy after saying he wouldn't support him for president in 2024 Jan. 6 panel lays out criminal contempt case against Bannon Hillicon Valley — Presented by Xerox — Agencies sound alarm over ransomware targeting agriculture groups MORE's reelection campaign and state GOP members is aimed at blocking lower federal court rulings that relaxed the received-by deadline for mail ballots.

Both requests are now pending before the Supreme Court, which after the arrival Tuesday of Justice Amy Coney BarrettAmy Coney BarrettLocked and Loaded: Supreme Court is ready for a showdown on the Second Amendment Biden's Supreme Court commission ends not with a bang but a whimper Biden's Supreme Court reform study panel notes 'considerable' risks to court expansion MORE now has a 6-3 conservative majority. 

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The GOP in both instances is asking the court to effectively block a state court-approved agreement to push back the deadline for the receipt of mail ballots by six days, from Nov. 6 to Nov. 12, for ballots that are postmarked by Nov. 3.

Roughly 1.4 million voters in the state requested mail ballots for the upcoming election, which is almost seven times as many requests compared to this point in 2016, according to the Raleigh News and Observer.

Recent polling shows a tight race between Trump and Democratic nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenJan. 6 panel lays out criminal contempt case against Bannon Overnight Energy & Environment — Presented by the American Petroleum Institute — Democrats address reports that clean energy program will be axed Two House Democrats to retire ahead of challenging midterms MORE in North Carolina, a must-win state for the president. National polls also show Biden supporters are about twice as likely as Trump voters to cast ballots by mail.

North Carolina is one of several key battleground states where the Trump campaign and other Republicans are fighting against eased mail voting restrictions. GOP-allied groups argue that an uptick in mail balloting due to the pandemic opens the election to widespread fraud, though election law experts say that claim is unsupported by evidence.

The Wednesday petition from North Carolina Republicans heavily cited concurrences filed by Justices Brett KavanaughBrett Michael KavanaughLocked and Loaded: Supreme Court is ready for a showdown on the Second Amendment Why Latinos need Supreme Court reform Feehery: A Republican Congress is needed to fight left's slide to autocracy MORE and Neil GorsuchNeil GorsuchLocked and Loaded: Supreme Court is ready for a showdown on the Second Amendment Justices weigh request for information on CIA's post-9/11 torture program Supreme Court declines to hear dispute over DC representation in Congress MORE in a 5-3 ruling Monday in which the court's conservative majority rejected a Democratic bid to reinstate a mail-in ballot due date extension in Wisconsin.

Updated at 12:31 p.m.