The United States has a strong and reliable voting system. Administered by the states, elections throughout our country have traditionally been quick and reliable.
These are important points to state outright, and loudly. We do not — and have not — faced widespread voter fraud. It does not occur during in-person voting, and it does not occur in states that have adopted universal mail-in balloting, either.
So ignore our president’s claims of rigging or dishonest elections. He’s lying, effortlessly and with no concerns for the potential damage to democracy.
What’s more, ignore his calls to vote twice.
For some reason, President Trump has decided to tell his supporters to vote by mail and then, on Election Day, head to their polling places. If their mail-in ballots aren’t recorded, he said, they should vote again.
There’s only one problem with that: Double voting is a crime. States have different rules on when mail-in votes might be counted, so depending on the state the president might inspire an untold number of people to actively break election law.
As we’ve said before, and we’ll no doubt say again: This is unacceptable.
Trump has no interest in an accurate count, of course. Republican operatives have begun to acknowledge that there’s no way he will actually win the popular vote. After all, in 2016, he lost that tally to Hillary Clinton by some 3 million ballots. No, what the president cares about is sowing chaos in a small number of swing states — to claim to his followers that he was cheated out of a victory that was rightly his.
It’s not difficult to figure out, not if you’ve followed Trump for the past several years. His bottomless need for affirmation outweigh any concern for voters or the republic.
Trump’s spokespeople deny that he has any intent to encourage double voting. He’s merely interested in ensuring an accurate count, they say. But it’s pretty interesting that ensuring an accurate count, to our president, means encouraging people to break the law.
As we’ve seen time and again, our president sees the world entirely through the prism of his own self-interest. It has proved toxic to our nation and our political dialogue. It has proved catastrophic as COVID-19 spread. We can’t allow that naked self-interest to overwhelm our free and fair elections.