Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel A. Alito Jr., Neil M. Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh said they would have granted a stay blocking the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision. On the other side were Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and the court’s three-member liberal wing: Justices Stephen G. Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.Justice Amy Coney Barrett, who joined the court on Oct. 27, did not take part in the decision not to fast-track the case. A court spokeswoman said Justice Barrett had not participated “because of the need for a prompt resolution” and “because she has not had time to fully review the parties’ filings.” Pennsylvania officials have instructed county election officials to segregate ballots arriving after 8 p.m. on Election Day through 5 p.m. three days later. That would as a practical matter allow a ruling from the Supreme Court to determine whether they were ultimately counted.Justice Alito’s statement in the Pennsylvania case echoed an earlier concurring opinion by Justice Kavanaugh in a voting case from Wisconsin. Justice Kavanaugh also said that state legislatures, rather than state courts, have the last word in setting state election procedures.Taken together, the Oct. 17 deadlock and statements from four justices suggest that Justice Barrett could cast the decisive vote if the Pennsylvania dispute holds the key to the election. Updated Nov. 4, 2020, 12:06 p.m. ET Late last month, the justices refused a plea from Republicans in the state to fast-track a decision on whether the Pennsylvania Supreme Court had acted lawfully.- Advertisement – The U.S. Supreme Court has not hesitated to block orders from federal judges that sought to alter state rules for conducting elections. Rulings from state courts present more difficult questions because the Supreme Court generally defers to them in cases concerning interpretations of state law, while the Constitution empowers state legislatures to set the times, places and manner of congressional elections.In a statement issued when the court refused to speed the Pennsylvania case, Justice Alito, joined by Justices Thomas and Gorsuch, criticized his court’s treatment of the matter, which he said had “needlessly created conditions that could lead to serious postelection problems.”“The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania has issued a decree that squarely alters an important statutory provision enacted by the Pennsylvania legislature pursuant to its authority under the Constitution of the United States to make rules governing the conduct of elections for federal office,” he wrote, adding that he regretted that the election would be “conducted under a cloud.”“It would be highly desirable to issue a ruling on the constitutionality of the State Supreme Court’s decision before the election,” Justice Alito wrote. “That question has national importance, and there is a strong likelihood that the State Supreme Court decision violates the federal Constitution.”But there was not enough time, he wrote. Still, Justice Alito left little doubt about where he stood on the question in the case. The court’s refusal to move more quickly came a little more than a week after it deadlocked, 4 to 4, on an emergency application in the case on Oct. 19. – Advertisement – Should the vote in Pennsylvania have the potential to determine the outcome in the Electoral College and should those late-arriving ballots have the potential to swing the state — two big ifs — the U.S. Supreme Court might well intercede.The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ordered a three-day extension for ballots clearly mailed on or before Election Day and for those with missing or illegible postmarks “unless a preponderance of the evidence demonstrates that it was mailed after Election Day.” WASHINGTON — President Trump promised early Wednesday morning to ask the Supreme Court to intervene in the election. “We’ll be going to the U.S. Supreme Court,” he said. “We want all voting to stop.”The first statement was premature. The second did not make sense.- Advertisement – The Supreme Court decides actual disputes, not abstract propositions, and then only after lower courts have made their own rulings. While there have been countless election cases filed around the nation, it is not clear which of them might reach the court in the coming days.But one candidate is already on the court’s docket. Last month, the court refused to put a case from Pennsylvania on a fast track, but three justices indicated that the court might return to it later if need be.As far as voting is concerned, it stopped on Election Day. But some states allow votes cast by mail on or before Election Day to be counted if they are received up to several days afterward. In Pennsylvania, for instance, the state Supreme Court extended the deadline for receiving ballots from Election Day to three days later. “The provisions of the federal Constitution conferring on state legislatures, not state courts, the authority to make rules governing federal elections would be meaningless,” he wrote, “if a state court could override the rules adopted by the legislature simply by claiming that a state constitutional provision gave the courts the authority to make whatever rules it thought appropriate for the conduct of a fair election.” – Advertisement –
Kolkata: Former India captain and East Bengal great Bhaichung Bhutia feels the club will not be playing catch up and have enough time to get their house in order if they eventually manage to hop on to the Indian Super League (ISL) bus this season. “I am very happy that finally East Bengal got an investor and are hopeful of playing ISL this year. I am really happy for the fans. They have been praying to see East Bengal play in the top league,” Bhutia told IANS on Thursday. East Bengal were without a sponsor for a long time after their former investors Quess Corp, who had a 70 percent stake in the club, terminated their tie-up on May 31 despite having a three-year deal. On Wednesday, East Bengal announced that they had sold a majority stake to city-based Shree Cement and would now appeal to the ISL organisers in a bid to make a dramatic late entry into the country’s top tier club competition. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee made the announcement on Wednesday, saying “all problems are solved, East Bengal will now play in the ISL”. The seventh edition of the ISL is set to start in Goa in the third week of November. Asked if East Bengal have enough time to build a team and at the same time fulfil all formalities, Bhutia said: “I think they have enough time. Other teams have also not really started training and some, like Chennaiyin FC and NorthEast United, have just appointed their coaches. Even Hyderabad FC had to change. “East Bengal have already signed quite a few players, I think. So I don’t think there should be any problem,” said Bhutia, who began his career with East Bengal in 1992 and went on to win every single trophy with the club, including one National Football League title and the ASEAN Cup in 2003. The iconic former striker had five different stints donning red-and-gold starting between 1993 and 2011. The player transfer window closes on October 20 and the registration deadline is October 23. East Bengal are yet to appoint a head coach and are still in talks with Spaniard Mario Rivera who guided the red-and-gold brigade to a second place finish in the truncated I-League. Bhutia said his advice to East Bengal would be to forget everything and go and win the ‘trophy’. “I think they have learnt their lessons from the past [with former investors Quess]. I am sure everybody will become more mature now,” he hoped. Bhutia also said if East Bengal do play the ISL this season, he would be eagerly waiting to see them and arch-rivals ATK-Mohun Bagan lock horns. IANSAlso Watch: ATTSA Gives 10 Days to Tea Garden Authorities Click to find out details
…say’s he had no role in appointmentsPresident David Granger has denied claims that the recent flurry of former army officers being appointed to top posts in the state apparatus since his Government took office has a sinister motive behind it.Speaking on this week’s edition of ‘The Public Interest’ programme, which was recorded on Thursday, the Head of State said the country is not being militarised,President David Grangerbut is still very much civil.“We’re still civil. Have you seen me in uniform over the last five years? No. So the country is not being militarised, and the mere appointment of persons who had military experience is not a sign of militarisation.”Granger then drew a correlation with the claims of militarisation and his cabinet being dominated by attorneys-at-law, saying that the argument cannot be made that he is “legalising the cabinet.”The Coalition Government has come in for much criticism, especially from the Opposition, for appointing military personnel, whether serving or retired, to several state positions.Only recently, former army Chief Brigadier George Lewis was appointed as deputy CEO of the GPHC, and is now acting CEO after the recent axing of former CEO Allan Johnson. Meanwhile, Lt. Colonel (ret’d) Lelon Saul is heading the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA).Referring to these two cases, President Granger noted that he had no say in these appointments. In fact, he went on to outline that it was the PPP/C regime that started the practice of recruiting former military officers in the Public Sector.“The practise of recruiting former military officers wasn’t initiated by the APNURear Admiral (Ret’d) Gary BestAdministration. Major General Joe Singh and Major General (Michael) Atherly were there before I got in. Colonel Ramsarup was at CDC.”Major General Atherly, who was appointed to head the National Anti-Narcotics Agency (NANA), is also the acting head of the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU), after the recent firing of long-time head, James Singh.Moreover, Granger noted that his administration continued the practice since many of these army officers were qualified.The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) has always expressed reservations about the appointment of former military personnel to key positions in the state.Since the coalition Government came to office in May 2015, several retired Guyana Defence Force (GDF) officers have been appointed to key advisory positions within the Government. These include Rear Admiral (Ret’d) Gary Best and Brigadier (Ret’d) Edward Collins, both former Chiefs of Staff of the GDF.Collins has been appointed Presidential Advisor on National Security, while BestLieutenant Colonel (ret’d) Lelon Saulhas been appointed Presidential Advisor on the Environment. Additionally, a number of soldiers have been seconded to work in the Defence Secretariat at the Ministry of the Presidency.Last year, the Ministry of the Presidency had announced that Colonel Nazrul Hussain would head the Department of National Events, after a series of arrangements for Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary had been bungled. Army officers have also been appointed to a number of State Boards and other civilian positions. And Granger’s Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, is a retired army colonel. The PPP’s concerns were amplified after two army officers were appointed to head Commissions of Inquiry. Retired Brigadier Bruce Lovell had been appointed to conduct a CoI into allegations of corruptions at CANU, and retired Colonel Windee Algernon had been appointed to conduct a CoI into a deadly fire at the Children’s Drop-in Centre.