White House trade adviser Peter Navarro on Tuesday suggested that the Senate runoffs in Georgia should be postponed in an apparent effort to reinforce false claims about voter fraud in the state after last month’s election delivered a win to Democrat Joe Biden.
Hot off press, new Lott study estimates 11,350 absentee votes lost to @potus Trump in Georgia. Another 289,000 "excess (fraudulent) votes" across GA, AZ, MI, NV, PA, WI. As promised this a.m. on Bannon's War Room. Postpone GA Cesspool election!! https://t.co/geqEhnKqCR
— Peter Navarro (@RealPNavarro) December 29, 2020
Navarro’s call to postpone the runoffs amid baseless claims of voter fraud was in reference to a recently published report by John Lott, a researcher who has done work for the National Rifle Association and whose studies on crimes committed by undocumented immigrants were debunked by the Cato Institute. Lott’s paper used data from counties in two critical battleground states lost by Trump to point at “an unusual drop” in Trump’s share of absentee ballots. He claims that the drop in the Peach State’s Fulton County alone would account for 11,350 votes. Biden won Georgia by 12,760 votes.
Lott suggests that in precincts with alleged fraud there was a depression in the proportion of absentee ballots for Trump, a development he deems “suspicious” despite Trump’s continuous railing against mail-in voting and his attempts before the election to suppress voting by mail.
Navarro, a Trump loyalist, told Fox News last week that he liked the idea of postponing the runoff elections scheduled to take place on Jan 5.
“Georgia — when I look at that, that is a cesspool of election irregularities,” Navarro said last Sunday, as early voting had already begun in the state.
It’s not the first time Navarro has propelled Trump’s baseless voter fraud conspiracy theories. Earlier this month the trade adviser circulated a so-called “Immaculate Deception” report laced with references to Trump-friendly publications like the Epoch Times and laden with conspiracy theories that pointed at election fraud that he said bagged a win for President-elect Biden. Navarro’s wildly inaccurate report is perhaps unsurprisingly also cited repeatedly by Lott.
Both reports are likely designed to prop up unfounded suspicion surrounding the election by lining up a hodge-podge of false claims about various votes. Many of the claims in the reports have been repeatedly touted by Trump despite being debunked by election security officials and a Justice Department whose former top official, Bill Barr, was fired by Trump weeks after he told the Associated Press in an interview that there was not evidence of widespread fraud that would overturn the results of last month’s election.