Trump’s claim of electoral fraud – “historic and historically awful”

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I’ve managed to get a good bit of sleep.

There are hopeful signs that Joe Biden has a path to win the US election, but we’ll have to be patient while the votes are counted. There are already hopeful signs from Arizona and Nebraska’s second district. I have also seen results from Wisconsin’s Dane County which are encouraging.

Just a few minutes ago I witnessed one of the most insane and disgraceful events in American political history.

Trump came out in the White House. First of all, the vast numbers of American flags lined up behind him and the playing of “Hail to the Chief” as he came on and left – all gave the event something of the air of a Monty Python sketch.

But the gist of his speech was that a fraud was being perpetrated in the election process. He basically said he wants the votes to be stopped from being counted in certain parts of the country where he thinks he has already won in those states. He said he would go to the Supreme Court to do this.

Jim Acosta CNN’s White House correspondent reacted:

Our founding fathers are probably rolling in their graves right now. They did not envision an American president delegitimizing an election. That’s what Donald Trump did a few moments ago. It’s historic and it’s historically awful.

On the same channel, Republican electoral lawyer Benjamin Ginsberg was “shocked” and “distressed” by the speech – calling it an act of “disenfranchising…legally cast votes”.

Even former Republican Senator Rick Santorum said he was very distressed by “using the word fraud…by people counting the votes”.

* Paul Walter is a Liberal Democrat activist and member of the Liberal Democrat Voice team. He blogs at Liberal Burblings.

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24 Comments

  • Michael Bukola 4th Nov '20 - 8:33am

    Blatant attempt at voter suppression of the predominantly ethnic vote in urban areas by reducing the amount of postal votes being counted. What a disgrace.

  • John Marriott 4th Nov '20 - 8:44am

    So, it’s down to the wire. That depends where the wire is. What an awful scenario.

  • Peter Martin 4th Nov '20 - 8:50am

    This link gives betting odds as the situation develops. Could go either way but with Trump as slight favourite. (8.50 GMT)

    https://www.actionnetwork.com/politics/election-odds-predictions-trump-biden-betting-presidential-race-2020

  • John Marriott 4th Nov '20 - 9:32am

    Who needs TV shows like “The West Wing” when we have the 2020 US Presidential Election!? Wow, I think I’d better cancel my Netflix subscription.

  • @john Marriott

    No I think you’ll need to Netflix and chill after all this !!!

  • John Marriott 4th Nov '20 - 11:06am

    @Michael1
    Where do we stand with opinion polls now?

  • Richard Underhil 4th Nov '20 - 11:13am

    .Now we know why he was refusing to say what he would do in certain circumstances.
    How about his oath of allegiance sworn on a Bible? and the large number of religious believers who he persuaded to vote for him? Lock him up!

  • Barry Lofty 4th Nov '20 - 11:18am

    To me it just sums up what a mess democracy is in, within supposedly democratic countries, including ours.

  • John Marriott,
    Ironically the Republican leaning polsters were almost spot on, Trafalgar again, but they get ignored in the media.
    Trump has won. I can see no way the Dems can take Pennsylvannia, no Gettysburg for them, 700,000 behind with only 1.4 million to count. Its only a mathematical way to win, not realistic. Republicans are closing fast in Nevada, they have polled very well in Clark County, you would assume that would be comfortably Democrat.
    Think we will be just playing games if Biden does not concede once Pennsylvania goes. Election probably hinged on North Carolina, very close there.
    When will the Elecoral College be finished with, should just be a straight popular vote, we may not like Trump but he has put on a lot of votes from last time, cannot deny he has popular appeal ourisde of the East and West coast.
    Even if it goes to Court, that is now loaded Conservative leaning, so Democrats have no chance, even if they had a good case
    If the Democrats could not win this time, will they ever again?

  • No landslide either way then, oh wait…

    pic.twitter.com/nq5tW2vVBY

  • Tahir Maher Tahir Maher 4th Nov '20 - 1:09pm

    Trump’s hubris claim about winning doesn’t mean he will. A lot of the places where he needs to win and Trump is leading – there are a large number of votes still that need to be counted. Biden is likely to win WI, Mi, AZ and possibly Nevada. But unlikely to win Pennsylvania. But by that time Biden should already have 270 votes

    The fight from a bad loser will than start

  • Peter Martin 4th Nov '20 - 1:15pm

    “Trump has won.” ???

    No he hasn’t. Not yet anyway.

    You might want to take a look at how the odds have swung wildly in the last 12 hours or so. See the betting link on my previous post.

    At the time of writing this, Joe Biden is back to being the favourite with a 68% chance of victory.

  • Peter Martin 4th Nov '20 - 3:41pm

    I think we can be very confident that Joe Biden will just creep over the line today regardless of what happens in Pennsylvania.

    At present he’s obtained 238 electoral college votes.

    He’s winning and should go on to win today in Nevada (6 votes), Wisconsin (10 votes), and Michigan (16 votes). These add up to another 32 votes.

    238 + 32 = 270 which is the ‘magic’ number!

  • Tahir Maher Tahir Maher 4th Nov '20 - 3:45pm

    If Biden wins – hopefully – sanity is reinstated in the WH in January.

  • Lorenzo Cherin 4th Nov '20 - 3:55pm

    Well phrased Paul.

    The man is more appalling than the opposing party can in their wildest absurdities of fantasy politics, ever achieve.

    Better To remember Reagan et al, as the centre right, we now have a semi Fascist populist in office, but maybe, not for long! BIDEN, His time!

  • Peter Sinclair 4th Nov '20 - 4:22pm

    Regardless of the final result, the Democrats will have some serious questions to answer.

  • Barry Lofty 4th Nov '20 - 4:45pm

    What about the Republicans, they need to do some serious mindsearching.

  • John Marriott 4th Nov '20 - 5:10pm

    I see that, at last, several commentators over the pond are saying that something needs to be done about the Electoral College.

  • Daniel Walker 4th Nov '20 - 5:32pm

    @John Marriott “I see that, at last, several commentators over the pond are saying that something needs to be done about the Electoral College.

    There is movement afoot on electoral reform in the US. Maine will be using Ranked Choice Voting (what we call AV or IRV) this time, and there are several referendums on using RCV at lower levels of government, including one on “proportional ranked choice voting”, which is STV by another name.

  • Paul Murray 4th Nov '20 - 11:00pm

    Trump wants the voting stopped in states where he’s ahead, but he wants it to continue in states where he is behind. This whole incident is beyond embarrassing, but is an apt conclusion to the Trump era.

  • Toby Keynes 5th Nov '20 - 10:40am

    @Paul Walter: “But the gist of his speech was that a fraud was being perpetrated in the election process. He basically said he wants the votes to be stopped from being counted in certain parts of the country where he thinks he has already won in those states. He said he would go to the Supreme Court to do this.”

    The myth that Trump called during that speech for counting to stop kicked off almost immediately after Trump’s speech. He certainly did make some wild and incredibly irresponsible claims that the election was being stolen by fraud, but his actual words were:

    “So, we’ll be going to the US Supreme Court; we want all voting to stop. We don’t want them to find any ballots at 4 o’clock in the morning and add them to the list, OK.”

    The key words are “we want all voting to stop”, not “we want all counting to stop”.

    Now, he may have meant to say “we want all counting to stop”, but that wasn’t what he said.

    He was certainly stating that fake votes were being inserted into the system, suggesting that this was the reason why the initial very favourable tallies were turning gradually against him as the hours passed. And of course he knew that the real reason was that, in those states, postal votes that strongly favoured Biden/Harris were being counted after the on-the-day votes that strongly favoured Trump/Pence.

    He was also clearly gunning for votes that had been cast and posted on or before the election but had not reached the electoral offices before close of polls, in those states where late-arriving ballots postmarked on or before polling day are being allowed.
    I have no doubt that he will continue the battle to have these votes disqualified.

    He’s also previously made the ludicrous and contemptible assertion that all counting should stop after midnight on polling day

    However, he did not, in his speech, say he would call on the Supreme Court to have all counting stopped.

    It’s totally understandable that this is how it was interpreted, it would be totally consistent with what he had said previous (and possibly even since), and efforts have indeed been made to stop the voting in Pennsylvania.

    But it’s not what he said in that speech.

  • Wow can not believe that the president of the United states just stood at the podium of the white house and claimed that democrats are stealing the election by fraud.

    How can Republican senators sit back and allow him to say this, they need to come out on mass and distance themselves from his remarks and they need to take him to task.

    It almost sounded to me that he was in sighting violence from some of his supporters.

    We all knew that Trump could be pretty low, but this beggars belief and you have to worry about the safety of the streets in some of the states after what trump just said

  • @Toby

    I was allowing for Donald Trump’s rather bizarre method of expression.

    He has since clarified his position:

  • Toby Keynes 6th Nov '20 - 12:47pm

    Noted – and I hope history will record both the words of his original speech and the underlying intention (which was indeed to stop the counts before legitimate but unfavourable votes could be counted).

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