President Donald Trump’s war on voting by mail took another turn on Monday morning in the form of a new baseless conspiracy theory.
“RIGGED 2020 ELECTION: MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WILL BE PRINTED BY FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AND OTHERS,” Trump tweeted. “IT WILL BE THE SCANDAL OF OUR TIMES!”
The President’s tweet seemed to emerge from Attorney General Bill Barr’s interview on Fox Business on Sunday, based on Trump’s retweet of the far-right media outlet Breitbart’s transcript of Barr’s comments.
The attorney general had falsely claimed during the interview that mail-in voting “absolutely opens the floodgates to fraud,” a claim Trump often makes even though there have been almost no reports of election fraud caused by voting by mail.
“Right now, a foreign country could print up tens of thousands of counterfeit ballots, and be very hard for us to detect which was the right and which was the wrong ballot,” Barr told Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo.
He did not provide evidence of his claim, which he had also invoked during an interview with the New York Times in May.
Barr’s remarks are fodder for Trump’s conspiracy theories (one of which alleges that kids steal ballots from mailboxes) in the President’s efforts to tamp down on voting by mail initiatives that would make it easier to vote, which Trump has openly admitted would hurt his chances of reelection.