Republicans do not want all Americans to be able to vote. Their ideas have become increasingly unpopular as they’ve been disproven again and again while Americans by and large agree with much of the Democratic platform. To counter this ebbing of support, Republican politicians and their right-wing media enablers have leaned more and more into inane culture-war wedge issues and voter suppression to keep their party afloat at the ballot box.
With this grim electoral reality in mind, Donald Trump’s campaign against voting-by-mail immediately makes sense. Even with a pandemic raging, Republicans are opposed to making voting easier and safer because they know it will drive up the overall vote count and that the more people who vote, the more likely it is Democrats will win.
Since there’s no real argument against voting-by-mail, Trump has been spreading the lie that it leads to widespread voter fraud, a claim completely without merit. The sudden faux concerns about election integrity become especially laughable when one remembers that Trump failed to take meaningful action after Russia interfered in the 2016 election and has done little himself to prevent them from doing so again this November.
Although he ultimately backed down from the idea, Trump went so far as to suggest that he might withhold federal funding from Michigan and Nevada if they continue their plan to expand access to vote-by-mail.
Unfortunately for the president, not every Republican is on board with his misinformation. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT), a frequent target of the president’s ire and the only GOP senator to vote in favor of his impeachment, defended voting-by-mail yesterday.
“In my state, I’ll bet 90 percent of us vote-by-mail. It works very, very well and it’s a very Republican state,” Romney said to reporters. The statement was brief, but it’s exactly the kind of fact-based pushback that reliably enrages Trump so it’s entirely possible he will lash out if asked by reporters about Romney’s remarks.
The most ludicrous part in all of this back-and-forth is that Trump himself has already cast his ballot in Florida for the 2020 election…by mail. Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was asked about this blatant hypocrisy and unsurprisingly proved unable to formulate a reasonable explanation.
“So first, with regard to the president doing a mail-in vote… The president is after all the president which means he’s here in Washington, he’s unable to cast his vote down in Florida, his state of residence. So for him that’s why he had to do a mail-in vote but he supports mail-in voting for a reason,” said McEnany.
Apparently, this White House thinks a habitually dishonest president deserves to vote-by-mail but the rest of us simply aren’t good enough or can’t be trusted to do so.
Kayleigh McEnany: "With regard to the President doing a mail-in vote, the President is after all the President." pic.twitter.com/I13umlI3Hl
— The Hill (@thehill) May 20, 2020
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