President Trump questions whether the 2020 election should be delayed until people can vote “properly, securely, and safely.”
“President Trump on Thursday suggested delaying the 2020 elections, something he does not have the power to do unilaterally, as he levied fresh attacks against mail-in voting. Trump […] framed the suggestion as a question and argued that with more mail-in ballots there would be more fraud.” (The Hill)
- What’s happening: This morning, President Trump tweeted (read it for yourself here): “With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???”
- What’s at stake: First, both official (as in, government) and campaign staff have confirmed to Fox News that President Trump was making a rhetorical point. Congress, not the U.S. President, determines Election Day, and there’s no sign the Senate would take up this issue and no chance the House, led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, would pass it.
However, as Fox News reported: “A senior administration official told Fox News that ‘the President is simply raising a question, whereas Democrats are proposing an entirely new system (of massive mail in voting) that will result in enormous delays in the election results.’
“And Trump re-election campaign national press secretary Hogan Gidley – responding to the president’s tweet – said in a statement that ‘the President is just raising a question about the chaos Democrats have created with their insistence on all mail-in voting.'”
Second, President Trump made an important distinction that we’ve echoed: there’s a big difference between absentee voting and what he called universal mail-in voting, i.e. ballots automatically sent out to registered voters.
Democrats have constantly pushed — and filed lawsuits to advance — universal mail-in voting and to introduce substantial voting procedure changes in states across America. But the mainstream media isn’t telling that story; they prefer to ignore the distinction in vote-by-mail types that President Trump has now clearly made.
You can expect mayhem and conspiracy theories to dominate the mainstream media all day anyway.
- What else to know: Prominent Democrats, including Hillary Clinton (read the story here), have claimed that President Trump won’t accept the 2020 election results, so it’s likely they’ll use today’s tweet to pick up that storyline again.
However, as The Federalist laid out this week: it’s the far left, not President Trump, who needs to learn to accept voters’ decisions in elections.
Watch: CBS runs a vote-by-mail experiment — and discovers major potential issues ahead of the 2020 election.
“Out of the initial batch mailed a week earlier, 97 out of 100 votes had arrived. Three simulated persons, or 3% of voters, were effectively disenfranchised by mail by giving their ballots a week to arrive. In a close election, 3% could be pivotal. Four days after mailing the second batch of mock ballots, 21% of the votes hadn’t arrived.” (CBS News)
- What’s happening: CBS News conducted and recorded an experiment to simulate the distribution and return of ballots by mail. (You can watch it for yourself here.)
The results should concern voters: CBS News found significant delays … which could impact whether votes are counted in the 2020 election.
- What’s at stake: Many have highlighted the voter security concerns with an increase in voting by mail, as is expected in the 2020 election due to COVID-19 concerns.
But the CBS News investigation is the first we’ve seen (tell us if we’re wrong!) to highlight a practical concern: the U.S. Post Office can be slow, and the turnaround time on ballots may not be quick enough.
Democrats have claimed that President Trump is trying to destroy the U.S. Post Office (though the R Street Institute has a nice summary of what’s wrong with that claim), and they’re likely to see this experiment as more proof to fuel their conspiracy theory.
But if this story has widespread impact, we think it will encourage Americans to request ballots and return them earlier than ever — which could shorten the already abbreviated 2020 election even further.
- What else to know: A dramatic increase in voting by mail also increases the time before voters learn election results. New York took “more than a month” to count the absentee ballots used in its June primary election.
Herman Cain, former GOP presidential candidate and chair of Black Voices for Trump, has passed away.
“Herman Cain — the maverick American business czar and Republican presidential candidate who campaigned for a sweeping tax reform plan called 9-9-9 — died Thursday morning after a monthlong battle with the coronavirus. He was 74.” (Newsmax)
Newsmax announced that Herman Cain passed away this morning. He had been hospitalized since July 1 due to COVID-19. His personal website has a statement published here.
Cain entered politics after a highly successful business career; he was a 2012 GOP presidential candidate and, in the 2020 election, was chair of Black Voices for Trump.
The Newsmax piece has warm anecdotes and personal recollections. Here’s one: “This past February [Newsmax CEO Chris] Ruddy said he invited Cain to visit Mar-a-Lago and the Trump Golf Course in West Palm Beach. ‘The president spotted Herman and yelled out ‘9-9-9’, and everyone roared with laughter,’ Ruddy said.” (As you’ll likely remember, Cain was known his 9-9-9 tax plan in the 2012 election.)
It’s tragic but highly likely the left will make cruel, highly politicized statements today. Our prayers will be with his family.
Convention update: President Trump will make his acceptance speech in Charlotte, and the DNC released their convention events schedule.
“Vice President Mike Pence confirmed that President Trump will accept his nomination at the Republican National Convention in Charlotte next month. ‘The people of North Carolina voted to send this president to the White House 4 years ago and we know North Carolina’s gonna vote for 4 more years for President Donald Trump on November 3 but before all that in Charlotte we’re gonna re-nominate this president for 4 more years and as the president said our plan is to be here that week to be able to have him receive that nomination,’ Pence said in an exclusive interview with ABC11.” (ABC11)
- What’s happening: Since President Trump decided to cancel the Jacksonville, Florida Republican events, he’ll now accept the Republican nomination in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Republican National Convention was originally planned to be held in the state; some convention business was already set to take place there, too.
- What’s at stake: Party conventions are both exciting events for supporters in the lead-up to the get-out-the-vote work of the fall before Election Day as well as major media opportunities for the nominees.
And, given the lack of traditional campaign events this year, these acceptance speeches take on extra importance. Speeches before live crowds tend to be more exciting and dynamic for TV viewers, while “straight-to-camera” addresses feel more somber and less energetic.
That’s highly likely why — although the Republican and Democratic conventions are largely virtual now, due to coronavirus concerns — both President Trump and Joe Biden plan to make in-person speeches at the convention sites as they accept the nominations.
- What else to know: Just over two weeks ahead of their convention, the Democratic National Committee released a full schedule of its convention events (you can review it for yourself here) — minus the prime-time speaker names. One was noted, though: Joe Biden will speak on Thursday, August 20.