First of all, a little reminder
We used to be called the US Politics Minute, but we’re back with a new name! Each week we will tell you about the powerful but often hidden forces trying to stop Americans from voting – whether it’s spreading false information or hitting the US Postal Service.
This week: Trump refused to embark on a peaceful transition of power. Will he concede if he loses?
On Wednesday, the president ducked questions of whether he would hand over the White House if he lost in November. Instead, he doubled his usual, completely unfounded rhetoric that the election could be rigged due to the surge in postal ballots during the pandemic
“The ballots are out of control. You know. And you know who knows that better than anyone? Democrats know this better than anyone, ”he said.
Meanwhile, in a chilling story across the Atlantic, anonymous Republicans said Trump already plans to challenge the election results.
Reminder: a peaceful transition of power is prescribed in the US Constitution.
Trump could refuse to accept the November election results in a number of ways. Here are some possibilities:
Can Democrats do anything about it?
His plan isn’t entirely clear, but Joe Biden employed a veritable army of lawyers to prepare for a messy election night (or, more likely, a week).
We’ll be reporting on this regularly, so stay tuned to Fight the Vote as the story unfolds.
Milwaukee, Wisconsin could be the most important city in this year’s election.
As Sam Levine and Isiah Holmes report, Wisconsin is a battleground state with every election – often tipping the electoral map. And Milwaukee is both a Democratic stronghold and home to a majority of Wisconsin’s African-American population. In 2016, according to local activists and experts, a combination of Republican policies and a lack of voter engagement significantly dampened the vote and pushed the state towards Trump.
- It was also the first year that a new Republican-backed voter identification law, which restricted the types of ID that people could use to vote, came into effect. A study says it prevented more than 20,000 people, mostly minorities and young people, from voting.
- On polling day, the turnout in Milwaukee fell to just over 41,000 votes from 2012. Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the state by just under 23,000 votes. He was the first Republican candidate for president of the state since Ronald Reagan in 1984.
Go postal: US mail was significantly delayed after the person appointed by Trump took office
Sam Levine and Alvin Chang of The Guardian discovered that the US Postal Service has experienced significant delays since Trump-appointed Postmaster General Louis DeJoy took over – a threat to mail-in ballots during election
And, last but certainly not the least: Ruth Bader Ginsburg died last Friday
We often talk about her historic fight for women’s rights, but its record in terms of voting rights was also rock solid.
- She voted to protect a provision in the Voting Rights Act that protected voters from uncontrolled voter suppression policies. In his memorable dissent, Ginsburg wrote that the rejection of the provision “It’s like throwing your umbrella in the pouring rain because you’re not wet”.
She voted against partisan gerrymandering in Arizona, saying “voters should choose their representatives, not the other way around”.
This year, Ginsburg voted to extend the time limit for Wisconsin voters to hand in their ballots due to the pandemic.
Does it make you wanna do something?
Many people think of it this way. After RBG’s death, organizations said voter registration increased immediately over the weekend. Vote.org, a non-partisan group, said it had:
It might seem obvious, but it’s critical that you check that your voter registration is up to date – especially in states with early deadlines. You can find out if you are registered to vote here and update your registration if you are not.