Even as Republicans and Democrats plan for upcoming national conventions and more than three months before the general election, President Donald Trump is already crying foul.
With his latest tweetstorm, the president has fueled fears that he will not leave the White House if defeated in November.
“With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history,” Trump tweeted Thursday morning. “It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???”
Trump has come under fire for his persistent assault on the U.S. Postal Service, even directing the withholding of billions of dollars in aid voted on and approved in the CARES Act.
“Somehow, we’ve lost our way,” Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Mich.) told BlackPressUSA in a livestream interview when asked about withholding funds from the postal service. “[Mail-in] ballots are safe, but I’m telling my constituents to go to City Hall and hand their ballots into the City Clerk.”
Trump again asserted that mail-in voting would lead to fraud or even foreign interference. The latter claim is ironic considering many observers — particularly Democrats — believe Trump won the 2016 election because Russia interfered.
“Mail-in Voting is already proving to be a catastrophic disaster,” he tweeted Thursday. “The Democrats talk of foreign influence in voting, but they know that Mail-in Voting is an easy way for foreign countries to enter the race.”
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, many state election officials have favored mail-in voting to alleviate safety concerns. Congressional Black Caucus Chair Karen Bass (D-Calif.) and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have counted among the high-profile politicians who’ve voiced concern that Trump would try and invalidate the November election.
Clinton told reporters that she believed Trump would “probably not leave the White House,” while Bass told BlackPressUSA that “there are means to remove him, and I hope to be a part of the team that does that.”
The U.S. Constitution suggests that Trump doesn’t have the authority to postpone the election. Congress would have to approve such a move.
“Mr. Trump appears to be doing everything in his power to undermine the credibility of November’s vote, in which a record number of Americans are predicted to rely on mail-in voting to avoid the risk of exposure to the coronavirus,” BBC journalist Anthony Zurcher wrote in response to Trump’s tweets. “He’s repeatedly made false and misleading claims about the reliability of the mail balloting and suggested broad conspiracy theories. Critics warn that he could be laying the groundwork for contesting the results — although the purpose may be simply to give him a scapegoat if he loses.”
His tweet could also be an attempt to divert attention away from the truly dismal second-quarter economic numbers just released, Zurcher said.
“Whatever the reason, tweeting about an election delay is not the move of a candidate confident of victory — and could be a sign of more desperate moves to come,” he wrote.