- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 27, 2020

A federal judge ruled Tuesday that South Carolina must count mail ballots even if voters’ signatures don’t match those on file, as long as officials are otherwise satisfied with the ballot.

Judge Richard Gergel, an Obama appointee, said some counties in the state are engaged in “unauthorized” signature-matching, and he ordered them to stop.

He called them a “hodgepodge” of rules, with some not even giving voters a chance to fix any errors before their ballots were tossed.

“The late discovery of these wildly inconsistent procedures, where a minority of counties are conducting some version of signature matching without the knowledge or approval of the State Election Commission and acting contrary to the Commission’s and its Executive Director’s plainly stated legal position that such procedures are unlawful under South Carolina law, raises a number of significant legal questions,” the judge wrote.

Signature-matching has been considered a key check on fraud in an election that’s already set records for vote-by-mail.

• Stephen Dinan can be reached at sdinan@washingtontimes.com.

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