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Trump asks public about delaying Nov. election over ‘inaccurate and fradulent’ mail-in voting in tweet

President Donald J. Trump delivers remarks and takes questions from the press, July 22, 2020. (Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)
July 30, 2020

President Donald Trump proposed delaying the November 3 presidential election in light of inaccuracies and fraud he said stems from mail-in voting.

“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???” Trump tweeted Thursday morning.

Trump does not have the authority to change the date of the presidential election, however. Altering the date of the general election is an act only Congress can carry out, per the Elections Clause in the U.S. Constitution.

Further, the Twentieth Amendment establishes that the incumbent president’s term expires on January 20, and no other law permits that date to be delayed or changed, according to the Congressional Research Service.

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“Mail-In Voting is already proving to be a catastrophic disaster. Even testing areas are way off. The Dems talk of foreign influence in voting, but they know that Mail-In Voting is an easy way for foreign countries to enter the race. Even beyond that, there’s no accurate count!” Trump also tweeted on Thursday.

On Wednesday night, Trump pointed to New York’s state elections, which he described as “a total mess” due to missing votes.

“New York Mail-In voting is in a disastrous state of condition. Votes from many weeks ago are missing – a total mess. They have no idea what is going on. Rigged Election. I told you so. Same thing would happen, but on massive scale, with USA. Fake News refuses to report!” he tweeted.

Trump has repeatedly raised concerns over the security of mail-in voting due to issues with ballots going unreceived and uncounted, which are problems he fears will worsen amid large scale mail-in voting due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a two-part tweet Trump posted on May 26, he said, “There is NO WAY (ZERO!) that Mail-In Ballots will be anything less than substantially fraudulent. Mail boxes will be robbed, ballots will be forged & even illegally printed out & fraudulently signed.”

Trump’s tweets about voter fraud on May 26, 2020 were flagged by Twitter as “potentially misleading” for the first time. (Donald J. Trump/Twitter)

“The Governor of California is sending Ballots to millions of people, anyone living in the state, no matter who they are or how they got there, will get one. That will be followed up with professionals telling all of these people, many of whom have never even thought of voting before, how, and for whom, to vote. This will be a Rigged Election. No way!” he added.

In a first, Twitter applied a fact-check label on the tweets, claiming Trump’s assertions about mail-in ballots enabling a “rigged election” are false and cannot be supported by evidence.