Donald Trump knows that his already-fading chances of winning in November will fall to zero if he can’t find some way to corruptly tilt things in his favor. He’s already gone as far as trying (and failing) to blackmail Ukraine into rigging the election for him, which tells you how desperate he is. Now he’s found another angle.
The unpredictability of the worsening coronavirus crisis means that it may not be safe to vote in-person in November. So naturally, Donald Trump and the GOP are trying to leave people with no choice but to vote in-person. Lower turnout generally gives an advantage to the worse candidate, and what better way to reduce turnout than to force people to risk dying of a horrible virus just to vote?
For this reason, the Democrats are trying to make sure the next coronavirus financial relief package includes a provision for nationwide mail-in voting. Considering Trump is already asking for another relief package, and he still hasn’t gotten around to distributing the funds from the first package, he has little leverage here. If he wants another relief bill, he’ll have to swallow mail-in voting. The thing is, if this happens, he’ll lose.
It’s why Trump has suddenly decided that he’s fanatically opposed to the idea of mail-in voting. Nevermind that some states already do this, and it makes things easier for everyone involved, with no voter fraud whatsoever. Facts don’t matter to Trump. Nor does it apparently matter to Trump that he’s voting by mail. Once the media exposed this, he went berserk about it:
What stands out here is that there is no functional difference between absentee voting and mail-in voting. They’re the same thing. Donald Trump is trying to argue that one thing is two different things. Even if he wanted to argue that absentee voting should only be for people who can’t travel home to vote, he could easily hop on Air Force One and vote in his home state, so his argument goes out the window – unless he wants to argue that it’s unsafe for him to travel during the coronavirus crisis, in which case his argument also goes out the window.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report