President Donald Trump continued his campaign to discourage universal availability of mail-in voting Wednesday, telling “Fox & Friends” that if everyone is given the opportunity to vote by mail this year, it could take years to get the election results.
The president was asked specifically about Nevada, where the Democratic-controlled Legislature passed a measure that would have absentee ballots sent to all active registered voters in the state so they don’t have to go vote in person during the pandemic. The Trump campaign has sued Nevada over the plan.
“As you know, the postal service for 40 years has had big problems,” Trump said. “They’re not equipped to handle a governor where they say ‘millions of ballots will be posted in a couple of weeks. Gear up.’ You can’t do that. It doesn’t work that way. It’s a very complex process. … If it doesn’t work out, you’re not going to know the Nov. 3 election result, I’m talking about for the whole country, it could be for months and months — actually it could be for years.”
President Trump has at times tried to draw a distinction between the absentee ballot process, through which people with certain circumstances can request to vote by mail, and universal mail-in voting, where everyone is sent a ballot to vote by mail regardless of their situation.
Regarding Florida, however, the president disregarded that difference and encouraged everyone in the state to request a ballot and vote by mail. Trump votes via absentee ballot in Florida.
“Whether you call it Vote by Mail or Absentee Voting, in Florida the election system is Safe and Secure, Tried and True,” Trump wrote Tuesday on Twitter. “Florida’s Voting system has been cleaned up (we defeated Democrats attempts at change), so in Florida I encourage all to request a Ballot & Vote by Mail!”
President Trump believes Nevada’s universal vote-by-mail plan will prevent Republicans from winning elections in the state.
“In an illegal late-night coup, Nevada’s clubhouse Governor made it impossible for Republicans to win the state,” Trump said on Twitter. “Post Office could never handle the traffic of mail-in votes without preparation. Using COVID to steal the state. See you in Court!”
Hawaii, Colorado, Oregon, Utah, and Washington already had voting by mail before the pandemic. Vermont, California, and Washington, D.C., adopted the voting method due to COVID-19.