F.E.C. Official Debunks Trump Vote By Mail Conspiracy Theory


President Donald Trump and his allies may hope to wish the realities of the current political climate in the United States out of existence, but that’s not going to work. This week, Federal Election Commission (FEC) member Ellen Weintraub delivered a lengthy public rebuttal to the conspiracy theories that Trump has pushed which state that there’s some kind of looming danger of some kind of massive voter fraud if mail-in voting is implemented on a more widespread level amidst concerns about the safety of in-person voting due to the Coronavirus pandemic. As Weintraub explained, there is, quite simply, no evidence for the president’s claims. They’re entirely disconnected from reality.

A full 33 states — more than half the country! — give all voters the option to vote via the mail, and five states, including Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Utah, and Washington, currently hold their elections almost entirely via the mail. In the 2016 presidential election, a full 1 in 4 voters cast their ballots via mail-in voting. These facts of the already widespread presence of voting-by-mail in the United States help reveal just how laughable that Trump’s conspiracy theories really are.

Weintraub posted:

‘Claims that voter fraud is widespread are… “dead wrong,” “crying ‘wolf,’” “false,” “a debunked lie.” Such falsehoods are not mere words. These falsehoods may well undermine the American people’s faith in our democracy. And the *real* fraud would be if U.S. citizens were deterred from voting and our government reflected the consent of fewer of the governed. True leaders speak truth. Especially in an election season plagued by pandemic, economic uncertainty, and death, the American people deserve nothing less than the truth from our leaders.’

Undermining faith in the U.S. election may, in fact, be Trump’s point via yet again pushing his conspiracy theories about the supposed widespread fraud in U.S. elections. He’s done so before — after the 2016 election, he claimed that millions of illegal votes were cast in the election, which, according to Trump’s description, boosted Hillary Clinton. That claim has no relationship to reality. He might as well be claiming that the moon is made of cheese at this point — that’s how ridiculously unreflective of reality that the president’s commentary really is.

He has issued some of his baseless claims about mail-in voting on Twitter, and the platform actually added a fact-check to some of his commentary on the platform about the topic. That basic step that the platform took of posting a link to the basic facts about the reality of the situation sent the president into a rage. The president threatened to shut down social media companies in retaliation for the move, as if Trump egotistically imagines that he’s some kind of despot and anyone who opposes his every whim should be silenced. Facts, however, are not a matter of political opinion, no matter whether or not Kellyanne Conway wants to harp on about supposed “alternative facts,” which do not exist.

Trump promptly planned to sign an executive order targeting social media companies, although details were not immediately clear. The Associated Press reported that the order was “aimed at curbing liability protections for social media companies.”