Donald Trump has been arguing since August — and more forcefully in the last week — that next month’s election will be “rigged,” all in an effort to deny the legitimacy of the results.
Of course there is large scale voter fraud happening on and before election day. Why do Republican leaders deny what is going on? So naive!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 17, 2016
The election is absolutely being rigged by the dishonest and distorted media pushing Crooked Hillary - but also at many polling places - SAD— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 16, 2016
Hillary Clinton should have been prosecuted and should be in jail. Instead she is running for president in what looks like a rigged election— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2016
100% fabricated and made-up charges, pushed strongly by the media and the Clinton Campaign, may poison the minds of the American Voter. FIX!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 15, 2016
And the thing is, Donald Trump is not wrong. There is a fix on. The election is being rigged. There’s plenty of evidence of it.
In fact, here’s several examples of election rigging going on right now:
— In Wisconsin, the state lied to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals and stated that it had addressed concerns voters had with state ID laws, telling the court that voters could simply go to the DMV and get a photo ID (even if it wasn’t for a driver’s license). The problem? Most of those photo IDs would not arrive before voting day. The state also straight-up failed to comply with a trial court’s orders. The state’s voter ID law, of course, disproportionately affects people of color.
— In order to try and get a photo ID at the DMV, some disenfranchised voters are being turned away repeatedly, including a 62-year-old African American who was turned way because his birth certificate was misspelled by one letter, and a 42-year-old Indian American — who has been naturalized since she was 8 years old — who was told she’d have to pay $340 for naturalization papers before she could register.
— Tens of thousands of Ohio voters — disproportionately from low-income districts that tend to vote Democratic — have been purged from the rolls for not voting frequently enough. 144,000 voters were purged from Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati alone.
— Kansas attempted to require proof of citizenship before voters could register. It resulted in a depressed turnout in August.
— Republicans in New Mexico sent ominous mailers to voters warning Democrats that ‘their neighbors will know” if they vote Democrat.
— Mike Pence — Donald Trump’s running mate — allowed police to raid the offices of a voter registration program aimed at signing up African Americans one week before the voter registration deadline. About 45,000 people will be left without the right to vote as a result.
— In North Carolina, even though a federal appeals court struck down a law specifically designed to suppress the African-American vote, Republicans continue to target their suppression efforts at black voters. In 70 counties in North Carolina, early voting hours have been expanded. However, in 23 counties that have a higher percentage of black voters, early voting hours have been reduced and eliminated altogether on Sundays.
— Arizona passed a law that disproportionality affects minority voters because it blocks the ability of people to gather other voters’ absentee ballots and submit them for counting
— 14 states this year alone have passed laws restricting the ability to vote. Not surprisingly, voter suppression laws are more common in states with high African-American turnout.
— Donald Trump is actively seeking “poll watchers,” volunteers asked to go to polling places in low-income areas to make sure there’s no funny business, i.e., to intimidate Democratic voters. Many of these poll watchers will actively challenge the credentials of young, black, and female voters in places like Pennsylvania and Ohio.
— It took a court to overturn Florida Republican Gov. Rick Scott’s decision not to extend the registration deadline after a hurricane forced the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of people.
— A man born in Liberia but adopted by U.S. parents a decade ago, making him a U.S. citizen, was turned away in Michigan after he was told he wasn’t allowed to vote despite presenting documentation proving his citizenship.
— In Georgia, where Donald Trump is facing the prospect of losing in a state that has historically voted Republican, police officers are being dispatched to the homes of black voters, where they are “commanding them to appear in person to prove their residence or lose their voting rights. ”
— In one county in Georgia, a polling place in a predominantly black district was moved from a gymnasium to the county sheriff’s office.
It’s not just these specific examples of voter suppression; it’s the effect it will have on the wider electorate. Look: If you’re a person of color in Miami or Philadelphia or Cleveland, it’s probably going to take a couple of hours to stand in line to vote on November 8th (while a rural white voter can walk up to his poll and leave in the time it takes to eat a sandwich). Add to the long lines the potential harassment and intimidation from “poll watchers,” the prospect of being turned away, and the humiliation of being asked to provide proof of citizenship, and the result is not only thousands of voters who won’t be able to vote, but thousands more who won’t even try because they don’t feel it is worth the effort or potential embarrassment.
The fix is in, and it’s all in Donald Trump’s favor.