Well, this article from Reuters is truly disconcerting. With all of the talk about rigged elections it seems that about 70% of Republican would attribute a Hillary Clinton victory to some kind of fraud, despite the fact that she has consistently led in polls and is holds a wider lead over her opponent than two of the last three presidential victors did at this point in the election cycle (based on trend aggregates from Real Clear Politics). But, “less than 50%” of Democrats would also attribute a trump victory to “rigging”. While that would certainly be unexpected based on the indicators, it is extraordinarily unlikely that a Trump victory would be due to fraud or “rigging.” I don’t know how much “less than 50%” the number of Democrats is that would attribute his victory to fraud, but that it is near enough to reference 50% is worrisome. Both Republican and Democratic leaders as well as experts in our election and voting systems assure us that the system is secure and that there is no reason to doubt the outcome, no matter what it is. Why, then, are so many willing to buy into to this baseless notion of “rigging” the election?
The term has been thrown out far too often, including by Bernie Sanders supporters during the nomination campaign especially by Donald Trump and his surrogates. People have been too willing to latch on to anything offered as “evidence,” while there has in fact been no evidence of widespread fraud or “rigging.” This notion is utterly ridiculous, and its promulgation is a far greater danger to our democratic process than actual fraud, which is so rare as to not even register statistically. As an example of the danger this rigged election fantasy presents, the Reuters article I mentioned up front states that “Fewer than one in 10 Democrats said they are prepared to take up arms in opposition compared to fewer than one in 20 Republicans.” There is no clarification of how much “fewer” the number is here either, but the reference points are somewhere below 10% of Democrats and somewhere below 5% of Republicans are considering armed revolution if they don’t like the result of the election. WTF???
Folks, the election isn’t rigged. There is no evidence of fraud that could possibly impact a result at any level. (Time referenced 38 documented fraud cases out of 146 million votes – that can’t possibly sway an election, and isn’t indicative of a problem.) Please calm down, and please remember that there are three branches of government. Even if you don’t get your pick for executive, your legislative representatives can temper any presidential agenda through legislative action (or inaction).