In a White House briefing, Trump repeated false claims of fraud in this year’s election. “If you count the “legal” votes, I easily win. If you count the illegal votes, they can try to steal the election from us”, Trump said defiantly. With his lead shrinking in Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Biden holding on to his lead in Arizona and Nevada, Trump appeared to lack understanding of the democratic process’s basic principles.
Showing sheer desperation, his briefing was full of lies. He claimed ballots are being counted illegally by Democrats even though there are confirmed Republican observers in every ballot counting area. Although there is no evidence of widespread voter fraud, he is sending teams of lawyers into the states he is losing in to pursue baseless legal claims.
Setting the stage for his current rhetoric, Trump repeatedly told supporters not to mail in their ballots because of fraud during his campaign. His supporters listened, opting to vote in person, whereas Biden supporters and other Democrats overwhelmingly mailed in ballots because of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, the latest counts coming in from these states have swung Biden’s direction, shrinking Trump’s lead, particularly in Pennsylvania and Georgia.
Despite no legal standing whatsoever, his desire to sue his way in the White House is disturbing. Democracy, at its core, demands all votes to be counted. Watching the President become unhinged and speak and advocate against counting all the ballots signals a man desperate and in fear of losing.
Other Republicans were equally disturbed by his White House briefing. Republican Governor, Larry Hogan, tweeted saying, “There is no defiance for the President’s comments tonight undermining the democratic process. America is counting the vote, and we must respect the results as we always have before. No election or person is more important than our Democracy”.
Counting the votes is not mail fraud; it is the foundation of Democracy. Attacking the institutions of Democracy is not just dangerous; it is downright unpresidential.
Danielle Sanders is a writer and journalist living in Chicago. Find her on social media @DanieSandersOfficial.