Don’t be surprised if there is a large contingent of Republican candidates who call midterm election results into question. Former President Donald Trump set the table with “the big lie” that the 2020 Presidental election was somehow stolen from him even as no evidence of that turned up. As millions of Americans participate in the midterm elections, many Republican candidates look to push the former President’s rhetoric further with “the big denial.” Many Republicans are outright prepared to call election results illegitimate if their opponents beat them.
Think about this. Sixty percent of Americans will have an election denier in some form on their midterm ballots, according to FiveThirtyEight. That’s 199 out of 552 Republican candidates who can hold House and Senate seats, secretaries of states, and governors around the country. At all points, they can upend the election process from refusing to certify elections to agreeing to certify electoral votes. 70% of those same Republicans running for office have questioned the legitimacy of President Biden being in office. That’s a scary thought to process.
Battleground states like Arizona and Nevada have candidates who intend to change the voting process if elected. Republican nominee for governor Kari Lake has been apparent she will only accept election results that show she won. In an interview with CNN’s Dana Bash, Lake wouldn’t commit to anything else.
Kari Lake refuses to commit to accepting the result of the Arizona gubernatorial election pic.twitter.com/2BUyJtFKVC
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 16, 2022
“I’m going to win the election, and I will accept that result,” said Lake, presumably enjoying a life unbound by rules or common sense.
Lake repeated: “I’m going to win the election, and I will accept that result. Because the people of Arizona will never support and vote for a coward like Katie Hobbs.”
President Biden addressed this a week ago in a press conference stating Trump’s ultimate goal was to “subvert the electoral system itself.”
From The Washington Post:
“There are candidates running for every level of office in America... who won’t commit to accepting the results of the elections they’re in,” Biden said in a televised address to the nation. “They’ve emboldened violence and intimidation of voters and election officials,” he charged— less than two years after a mob of Trump supporters ransacked the US Capitol to try to overturn the 2020 result.
Thankfully, the attempted Jan. 6th insurrection did not work to the effect of overthrowing the government. Now, the playbook is to ignore the democratic process and make the impact of these elections mean very little. The constraints around our voting process have been getting worse. There have been the dissolution of voting rights, widespread voting intimation, and challenges to invalidate ballots. Even if Americans overcome all that, the last chest piece Republicans will play is to claim fraud repeatedly.
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