President Donald Trump tore into the practice of conducting elections by mail, saying it can lead to voter fraud, but he encouraged people who can't get to the polls on Election Day to vote via absentee ballot.
Trump tweeted Wednesday evening: "Absentee ballots are a great way to vote for the many senior citizens, military, and others who can't get to the polls on Election Day. These ballots are very different from 100% Mail-In Voting, which is 'RIPE for FRAUD,' and shouldn't be allowed!"
That statement followed Trump's other claims in recent days that holding elections by mail — which is not necessarily the same as voting by absentee ballot — can lead to voter fraud.
During a White House briefing Wednesday, a reporter pointed out that Trump recently voted in Florida's presidential primary with an absentee ballot. Voting this way requires the registered voter to formally request the ballot. According to the bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures, all registered voters receive a ballot in an election that's conducted completely by mail.
Trump responded by saying, "Sure I can vote by mail for that because I'm allowed to. That's called out of state. You know why I voted? Because I happen to be in the White House and I won't be able to go to Florida and vote.
"There's a big difference between somebody that's out of state and does a ballot and everything is sealed, certified, and everything else. … And you get thousands and thousands of people sitting in somebody's living room signing ballots all over the place. No, I think that mail-in voting is a terrible thing. I think if you vote, you should go. Even the concept of early voting is not the greatest because a lot of things happen. … I think you should go and you should vote.
"There's a lot of dishonesty going on with mail-in voting."
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