After months in which Pennsylvania officials insisted that keeping the letter of every last bit of election law was as vital to them as breathing, the state’s Democratic governor committed what appears to be an election law violation.
During a radio interview this week, Gov. Tom Wolf said his wife dropped off his mail-in ballot for him, according to Spotlight PA.
That’s a violation of an election law that bans anyone but a voter from dropping off an absentee ballot.
The incident came to light because Republican state Rep. Seth Grove was listening to”The KDKA Radio Morning Show” on Pittsburgh’s KDKA-AM and heard Wolf admit to doing something Grove wanted to make legal in election reform legislation that Wolf had vetoed earlier this year.
The governor was asked about going to the polls on Election Day.
“I didn’t show up in person at the polls. We voted a couple weeks ago, actually,” Wolf said. “My wife actually dropped it off personally two weeks ago, so it’s there.”
Elizabeth Rementer, a spokeswoman for Wolf, called it “an honest mistake,” according to Spotlight PA.
When he highlighted Wolf’s comment on Twitter, Grove noted the irony of the governor doing something he refused to allow others to legally do.
And now his wife committed election fraud……. pic.twitter.com/iuV5Y1K2xM
— Rep. Seth Grove – “the Architect” (@RepGrove) November 5, 2021
“This is illegal under the election code,” Grove tweeted, “BUT would have been legal had [Wolf] signed HB 1300.”
On Nov. 2, Gov. Wolf did an interview with KDKA where he disclosed his wife turned in his mail-in ballot for him.
This is illegal under the election code, BUT would have been legal had he signed HB 1300.
1:25-1:55 minute has the salient portion:https://t.co/laMBmv4D2a
— Rep. Seth Grove – “the Architect” (@RepGrove) November 4, 2021
Wolf vetoed HB 1300 because it included stricter voter ID requirements.
“Make no mistake, leaders of the [state] House Republican caucus are being driven by fringe conspiracy theories, and that is no way to make good policy,” Wolf said in June, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Democratic state Sen. Sharif Street said the bill was “nothing more than attempts to rebrand Jim Crow.”
Grove refused to twist the knife after Wolf’s action came to light.
“This happens,” he said. “No one is an election law expert, right? Average citizens aren’t.”
“We wanted to make the change to allow that interaction because we get it: It is convenient for a spouse to drop off your ballot,” he said.