Trump tried to vote with wrong address while railing against voter fraud

Ankita Rao
·2 min read
<span>Photograph: Patrick Semansky/AP</span>
Photograph: Patrick Semansky/AP

Donald Trump has been railing against vote by mail for the past few months – falsely citing the potential for voter fraud, which is extremely rare. As it turns out, the president himself bungled the system.

Trump registered to vote in Florida last September under his White House address – 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, according to the Washington Post. But Florida does not allow people to register to vote without an in-state address, and one month later, Trump resubmitted his application with a Florida address and voted in the Republican primary.

Related: Trump threatens to cut states' election funding over false claims of voter fraud

On his registration form, Trump told Florida officials his legal residence was in Washington DC but on another day also said he was a “bona fide resident” of Palm Beach, Florida, home to his Mar-a-Lago Club, according to the public records reviewed by the Post.

Other voters have faced significant consequences for the same mistake. In fact, as some Democrats pointed out, the same issue is listed on White House website as voter fraud.

A city manager in Florida paid $5,000 in fines for putting the wrong address on her registration, as did a restaurateur in Palm Beach county. Florida Republicans also challenged state Democrats in 2018 in a vote-by-mail investigation, but the state found there was no fraud. Florida also tossed out thousands of mail-in ballots for supposedly having signatures that did not match original registration forms.

Meanwhile, Democrats and some Republicans have called on states to ease vote-by-mail restrictions amid the pandemic. Tuesday’s primary election showed people waiting in line for hours in cities such as Washington DC, some of whom had not received absentee ballots in time.

If this happens in November, election officials fear the public could be at risk for contracting Covid-19, as some did in Florida and Wisconsin during elections earlier this year.