US Supreme Judge Samuel Alito said on Monday that a ruling on whether to declare the 2020 presidential election could still be appealed by the states of Texas and Georgia, arguing that the rule could potentially violate the constitution.
Alito’s ruling was a blow to President Donald Trump’s claim that he would be able to conduct the presidential election by secret ballots.
Trump has argued that the ruling would give him more flexibility in how he would run his second term in office.
But the Supreme Court ruled against Trump’s argument on Monday, finding that the rules of the 2020 primary election could continue even if a state decides to use a secret ballot.
In a decision that struck down the state’s secrecy rule, the court ruled that “states may use election materials to determine who is eligible to vote and to vote in a particular manner”.
The ruling was hailed by Trump, who had claimed the election could only be conducted in secret and that he was a strong supporter of the election process.
Trump, whose approval rating has slipped below 30% in several polls, has repeatedly accused Democrats of waging a “rigged” election, and has repeatedly vowed to overturn the ruling.
“We have a constitutional right to vote.
I think we should respect that right,” Trump told reporters in Texas on Monday.
“If they do not respect it, they can go back to the drawing board.”
Trump had called the ruling “the biggest victory for American democracy since I’m president” in a speech in Texas last month.
But Trump, whose presidency has been dogged by allegations of voter fraud, said he would have to wait for the Supreme court to decide whether he had the authority to use secret ballot voting.
“I’m still going to get out there and tell people what’s going on, because it’s the law of the land,” he said.
The US Supreme court has ruled 5-4 in favor of the states that challenged the state secret ballot rule, saying it would violate the Constitution.
Al Jazeera’s Will Ripley, reporting from Washington, DC, said the ruling was significant because it could have significant consequences for future elections in the US.
“It’s one more reason why the Trump administration should be wary of using secret ballot elections,” she said.
“If the court is willing to strike down the rule, it’s not hard to imagine that states will follow suit and use the rule to try and disenfranchise voters in future elections.”
The Supreme Court has also ruled against the use of secret ballot ballots in other US states, including Arizona, Florida and Texas, where the ruling could also be appealed.