Commissioner Ellen Weintraub of the Federal Election Commission has a news flash for President Donald Trump and anyone else who needs to hear it: “In the United States of America, we do not ‘get rid of’ ballots.”
Earlier, when asked during a press briefing if he would commit to a peaceful transfer of power if he loses the November election, Trump refused to do so, saying, “Well, we’re going to have to see what happens.”
He then went on to attack mail-in voting, suggesting there would only be a peaceful transition if mail-in ballots are removed. He also implied there would be no need for a transfer without mail-in ballots. (He has on several occasions claimed the process favors Democrats).
“Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a peaceful ... there won’t be a transfer, frankly, there’ll be a continuation,” he said.
Weintraub, a Democratic appointee, cleared things up with a tweet:
In case anyone is unclear on the concept, in the United States of America, we do not “get rid of” ballots. We count them. Counting the ballots – *all* the ballots – is the way we determine who leads our country after our elections. The only way. https://t.co/F4amcEvx2v— Ellen L Weintraub (@EllenLWeintraub) September 23, 2020
Trump’s brazen disregard for the Democratic process on Wednesday ignited deep concerns from those on both sides of the aisle. It’s just the latest milestone in his months-long assault on mail-in voting and the nation’s electoral system. He has made persistent efforts to plant seeds of doubt, stoke confusion and delegitimize the electoral process ahead of the presidential election, which he has claimed without evidence will be “rigged.”