Marsy’s Law to get its day in court.

The November 2019 general election is in Pennsylvania rearview mirror, but one of the election’s results – regarding the “Marsy’s Law” ballot referendum – remains unresolved. On Wednesday, Commonwealth court indicated it would hear legal arguments regarding the validity of the ballot question – it was challenged for having multiple constitutional amendments contained within one ballot question – en banc by the full court during the court’s March session in Philadelphia. Commonwealth Court Judge Ellen Ceisler issued an injunction on Oct. 30, in response to the aforementioned legal challenge – allowing the ballot referendum vote to occur during the Nov. 5 election, but for the vote totals to not tabulated and certified, putting the outcome of the vote in limbo until the courts make a decision regarding the ballot question’s constitutionality; the state Supreme Court allowed the injunction to stand. The unofficial vote counts showed the referendum question being approved by roughly 74 percent of those voting. According to supporters of the amendment, “Marsy’s Law” would ensure crime victims have the right to receive information about their rights, to receive notification of proceedings in their criminal cases, to assert additional statutory rights, to be present at court proceedings, to be heard at plea and sentencing proceedings, and to be treated with fairness, respect and dignity.

FOR MORE BACKGROUND: Read our October 23, 2019 post “Nov. 5 Ballot Referendum: Marsy’s Law Crime Victims’ Rights Amendment to the Pennsylvania Constitution.

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