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Pennsylvania Supreme Court strikes down GOP bid to stop election certification

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Saturday rejected a last-ditch bid from Republicans including Rep. Mike KellyGeorge (Mike) Joseph KellyGOP lawmakers raise concerns about child tax credit expansion Republican rips GOP lawmakers for voting by proxy from CPAC Supreme Court won't review Pennsylvania GOP election lawsuits MORE (Pa.) to halt the certification of the 2020 election results in the Keystone State. 

The court's decision delivered the latest blow for Republicans, President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden to move ahead with billion UAE weapons sale approved by Trump Fox News hires high-profile defense team in Dominion defamation lawsuit Associate indicted in Gaetz scandal cooperating with DOJ: report MORE and his campaign to overturn election results in a battleground state that President-elect Joe BidenJoe BidenIRS to roll out payments for ,000 child tax credit in July Capitol Police told not to use most aggressive tactics in riot response, report finds Biden to accompany first lady to appointment for 'common medical procedure' MORE won by more than 1 percentage point. 

In an order released Saturday night, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court vacated a preliminary order by the Commonwealth Court and dismissed the case.

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"Upon consideration of the parties' filings in Commonwealth Court, we hereby dismiss the petition for review with prejudice based upon Petitioners' failure to file their facial constitutional challenge in a timely manner," the order read. 

The ruling comes after Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough on Wednesday ordered state officials to halt further steps to certify the state's election results one day after Gov. Tom WolfTom WolfAmbitious House lawmakers look for promotions Follow the science: Charter school expansion is a rising tide that lifts all boats The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Split screen: Biden sells stimulus; GOP highlights border MORE (D) certified the Keystone State's results for Biden. 

Following McCullough's order, Pennsylvania Secretary of the Commonwealth Kathy Boockvar and Wolf appealed the order to the state's high court.

The latest order by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court reverses McCullough's decision. 

Originally, an emergency petition was filed in state court last weekend by the GOP ahead of Monday's deadline to certify the election results, a process that would solidify a defeat for Trump. 

Plaintiffs including Kelly asked the court to invalidate a universal mail-in voting policy that was signed by Wolf and passed by a Republican-held legislature last year. They argued that provisions that allowed expanded mail-in voting in the state were unconstitutional, according to the order.

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"As a remedy, Petitioners sought to invalidate the ballots of the millions of Pennsylvania voters who utilized the mail-in voting procedures established by Act 77 and count only those ballots that Petitioners deem to be 'legal votes,'" the order continued. 

The rejected bid is part of a multistate effort by Republicans and Trump allies to overturn the results of the 2020 election in favor of Trump. However, election law experts have noted that lawsuits pressed by the Trump campaign and its allies are not going to succeed in their intended result.

Trump has still refused to concede the election to Biden. However, the president said this week that he would leave the White House if Biden is declared the winner of the Electoral College. 

"Certainly I will. And you know that," Trump said when asked if he would leave the White House if the Electoral College voted for Biden.

"If they do, they made a mistake," he added. 

Updated 7:37 p.m.