US Elections: Do Ballots Received After Election Day Still Count?

Trump has been asking election officials to stop accepting new votes. But what do the rules say about cut-off dates for ballot reception?

With one of the most competitive and turbulent elections in recent history, the 2020 United States presidential elections is far from being over. Even with votes still being counted in several states, incumbent President Donald Trump's campaign has already filed lawsuits to stop vote count in states where he is losing leads and also asking for a recount where he lost closely.

Since Election Night, Trump has constantly reiterated that "votes cannot be cast after poll" - eventually getting fact checked by Twitter where he pushed out the same narrative.


Are New Ballots Still Coming In?

This leads us to the question - are ballots still being received, even though polling has closed? Yes.

While most states require ballots to be postmarked and received by Election Day (November 3), there are some states that accept ballots that are postmarked before election day, and is received within six days (November 9).

There are yet some other states that accept ballots that are postmarked until the election day itself, and is received within 10 days (with the date being different in each state).

NBC News made a map of US states, classified according to the cut-off dates for the reception of mail-in ballots.

Map made and published by NBC News.

Why Are Ballots Received After Election Day Still Accepted?

This is done for various reasons - the top one being anticipation of undue delay with the postal system. Most of the absentee ballots received after election day usually come from military and overseas absentee ballots.

Less than a month before the elections, the United States Supreme Court extended the cut-off date for reception of ballots to as late as Friday, as long as they are postmarked by November 3. This is one of the major reasons that late arriving ballots are still being accepted days after November 3 in Pennsylvania - where Biden has closed a gap of more than 12% vote share with Trump through Tuesday night.

However, despite these new ballots and an updated vote count, the race is still to tight in both Pennsylvania and Georgia to be called.

When Are These States Likely To Be Called?

With absentee ballots still arriving in some of the states, and the vote margins being too narrow, the US media has refrained from calling Nevada, Georgia, Pennsylvania and North Carolina.

According to experts, it might take until the weekend to find out who the next president shall be.

Click Here To View Our Live Blog On US Elections 2020: Donald Trump Vs Joe Biden

Updated On: 2020-11-06T18:22:05+05:30
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