President Trump told reporters on Friday that he opposes a Democratic push to switch to mail-in voting for the general election this fall, saying without offering evidence that he thinks “a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting” just days after he and other GOP lawmakers said mail-in voting would hurt the Republican party.
Trump told reporters at the daily White House coronavirus briefing that he does not support using vote-by-mail as a backstop in the event the COVID-19 outbreak keeps people from going to the polls.
“No, because I think a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting,” said Trump, who has baselessly claimed that rampant voter fraud kept him from winning the popular vote in 2016. “I think people should vote with ID, voter ID. I think voter ID is very important, and the reason they don’t want voter ID is because they intend to cheat.”
Trump ends the press briefing with some thoughts on voting rights: "I think a lot of people cheat with mail-in voting. I think people should with ID — voter ID … you should have a picture for voting. It should be called voter ID." pic.twitter.com/0ehNlxao3H
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 3, 2020
“It shouldn’t be mail-in voting,” he added. “It should be you go to a booth and you proudly display yourself. You don’t send it in the mail where people can pick up — all sorts of bad things can happen … by the time it gets in and is tabulated.”
The coronavirus relief package signed into law last week by Trump included $400 million for states to bolster preparations for primaries and the general election during the coronavirus crisis.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has argued that voting by mail could be necessary in the event the virus is still prevalent and keeps poll workers and voters from casting their ballots in November.
“The things they had in there were crazy. They had things, levels of voting that if you’d ever agreed to it, you’d never have a Republican elected in this country again,” Trump said during an appearance on “Fox & Friends” on Monday. “They had things in there about election days and what you do and all sorts of clawbacks. They had things that were just totally crazy and had nothing to do with workers that lost their jobs and companies that we have to save.”