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Our opinion: Preparing for November vote

President Donald Trump’s lawsuit against Kathy Boockvar, Pennsylvania’s secretary of state, and all 67 Pennsylvania counties’ boards of election is distracting from very real issues that need to be solved ahead of the Nov. 3 general election.

President Trump’s lawsuit says mail ballot drop boxes were unconstitutional in the way they were used in the June 2 primary election because elections officials made decisions outside the federal and state constitutions, thus taking power away from the legislative branch. The suit also argues that state and county elections officials set up different rules and policies across the state, creating a patchwork system of different rules in counties across the state.

A judge will decide those issues, but we are concerned that spending time rehashing these rules takes away from an even bigger issue — the issue of timely and accurate results for the Nov. 3 election. Mail-in voting is safer from a public health perspective than in-person voting, but it is much slower to count mailed ballots than ballots filed in person.

The four months remaining between now and election day should be spent figuring out ways to get votes tallied as quickly and efficiently as possible — and we hope county boards of election across the state are working on that problem. Spending weeks deciding the winner of the presidential election will cast just as much doubt on the validity of the election as the concerns over fraud using mail-in ballots.

Mail-in voting is going to be a key part of the November election, and we must do all we can to make the process the best it can be.

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