Trump Gets Schooled After He Suggests Delaying the Election in Unhinged Tweet Railing Against Mail-In Voting
With calls for expanded mail-in voting measures in the face of the pandemic that's killed over 150 thousand Americans, President Donald Trump has repeatedly railed against voting by mail.
The President says that "absentee voting," which he erroneously believes holds a significant distinction from voting by mail, is permissible if one has a reason. Trump voted absentee in the Florida primary, despite being in Florida for a golf getaway during the early voting period.
The President has also said that if elections were held as normal in World Wars I and II, then they can be held normally during a pandemic. He didn't acknowledge that soldiers overseas in these wars voted by mail, nor that the wars weren't fought on American soil.
On Thursday morning, Trump yet again railed against voting by mail—and even suggested postponing the 2020 United States Election.
With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 30, 2020
Democratic nominee Joe Biden predicted in April that Trump would call for a delay of the November election:
"Mark my words, I think he is going to try to kick back the election somehow, come up with some rationale why it can't be held."
The Trump campaign said that this and other Biden predictions were "the incoherent, conspiracy theory ramblings of a lost candidate who is out of touch with reality."
Three months later, Trump is wondering about delaying the election, but there's just one problem.
Under the United States Constitution, only Congress has the power to set the date for the election and it must be the same for the entire country:
"The Congress may determine the Time of choosing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States."
People began informing Trump that the date of the election was beyond his power.
OMG: Now Trump is floating the idea of DELAYING THE ELECTION, which only an Act of Congress can do. So he's saying he'll claim the results of the undelayed election we're bound to have on November 3 are FRAUDULENT regardless of the electoral votes Congress certifies on January 6! https://t.co/c8OLOx83Lo
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) July 30, 2020
POTUS's 'delay' talk is so gratuitously self-destructive. The date for counting electoral votes is fixed by congressional statute. Only Congress could change it. All the 'delay' tweet does is fuel the paranoia I addressed last week ... https://t.co/PdDV2c3lVn
— Andy McCarthy (@AndrewCMcCarthy) July 30, 2020
To change a statute, both houses of Congress must pass, and the President must sign, new statutory text. That's not happening. Election date will be November 3. Also, under the Constitution (20th Amdt), terms of President and Vice President end at noon on January 20, 2021.
— Greg Corcoran (@GSCorcoran) July 30, 2020
*Only Congress can change the date of the election.
*Even then, the Constitution requires that states send electoral votes to Congress by Dec. 23.
*And Trump must end term in office, the Constitution says, on Jan. 20.https://t.co/BfAD5Gmx9n pic.twitter.com/MCl2VaMjDz
— Jim Roberts (@nycjim) July 30, 2020
People pointed out that regardless of whether or not the election is delayed, if a new President isn't elected by January 20, the incumbent's first term is still over.
Trump inadvertently floated the idea of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) being promoted to President in 2021, however temporarily.
BREAKING: because only Congress can change the election and they won't, Trump appears to be endorsing President Nancy Pelosi 👀 https://t.co/RXfI6c16RR
— Christine Pelosi (@sfpelosi) July 30, 2020
The US Constitution states that his term is up in January. Delaying an election doesn't change that. Speaker of the House is next in line. President Pelosi anyone? https://t.co/4u2lb6QouV
— Barb Utesch (@BarbUtesch) July 30, 2020
Delay the election? Unless Trump takes over the government by military force and suspends the Constitution, it will be President Pelosi on January 20th by default. Because without an election, Trump has absolutely no authority to remain in power unless he does a military coup.
— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) July 30, 2020
Then we get President Pelosi January 20 at noon per the Constitution.
Your term expires either way.
Hope the door hits you......
— Grateful Chef (@ChefJohnnyB2) July 30, 2020
Others insist that Trump is yet again trying to distract the public from other developments, such as the most precipitous drop of the national GDP in American history.
Trump's election delay threat is a purposefully-timed distraction to divert attention from the 32.9% reduction in Q2 GDP, the 1.43 million new unemployment claims and the 150,000 Americans who have died from coronavirus under his watch.
Don't let him get you off your message.
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) July 30, 2020
▪️The economy fell by 33%, the largest drop in US HISTORY.
▪️There were 1,430,000 new unemployment claims.
▪️150,000 Americans have died of covid-19.
All bc of Trump's devastating incompetence.
HE DOES NOT HAVE THE POWER TO MOVE THE ELECTION
He's saying it as a distraction.
— Mikel Jollett (@Mikel_Jollett) July 30, 2020
We've had presidential elections during:
The Civil War
The Great Depression
World War I and II
So, we can have a presidential election this year. Because only Congress can change the date
What Trump is suggesting is dangerous, but it's also an intentional distraction
— Chris Lu (@ChrisLu44) July 30, 2020
Trump pinned the tweet to the top of his profile.