The Democrats were just dealt a blow in Washington State. The Washington State Supreme Court unanimously rejected a Democrat suit seeking to review 3,000 rejected ballots.

In a brief written opinion, the high court said that under Washington law, “ballots are to be ‘retabulated’ only if they have been previously counted or tallied” – excluding those that had been disqualified by canvassing boards.

The decision does not affect the 561 uncounted ballots in King County that were discovered Sunday to have been wrongly rejected because of mistakes by election workers. Those ballots go to a canvassing board Wednesday for verification and could tip the delicate balance of the election toward Gregoire, who claimed 58 percent of the vote in the Democratic stronghold that includes Seattle.

“The most likely outcome is Dino wins the hand recount, but we continue to worry about what’s next in King County,” said state Republican Party Chairman Chris Vance.

Republicans may take some comfort in the Court’s language, however. Because the 561 uncounted ballots were not counted prior to official certification, there may be away around those. In fact, integrity in the process should call those ballots into question. The fact that a month after the election and several weeks after the certification 561 ballots mysteriously showed up in one of the most Democrat leaning counties should give the Court pause for concern.