There has always been a certain amount of stupid in politics. But nothing like the current situation, where Donald Trump, the current idiot in chief, and his loyal minions seem to be intent on raising stupidity to a fine art form.
It was his complete stupidity, or his insecurity, or some combination of the two, that led Trump to insist that the only reason Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in last year’s election was because “millions” of votes were cast illegally.
In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 27, 2016
Nobody with any intelligence in either party agrees with Trump’s assertion that there was massive voter fraud, and the notion has been thoroughly debunked by impartial investigators such as FactCheck.org:
In an interview that aired on Jan. 25, ABC’s David Muir asked Trump for evidence of widespread fraud, given that “what you have presented so far has been debunked. It’s been called false.” We found several of Trump’s claims in defense of his statements to be inaccurate.
But Trump would not be deterred, and proceeded to assemble a commission to look into the matter. The panel is headed by Mike Pence. But Pence’s second in command is Kansas secretary of state Kris Kobach. Kobach is the mastermind behind something known as “interstate cross-check” — a database that attempts to identify people who are registered to vote in more than one location. The database is ridiculous — it will flag “Jerome A. Johnson” in Michigan and “Jerome F. Johnson” in Florida as being potentially the same person — but it is no joke. And it is already being used to disenfranchise voters.
Trump’s grand commission held its first formal meeting on July 19. Afterward, Kobach spoke with MSNBC’s Katy Tur, where he made one of the most ridiculous statements he has made to date on the topic of voter fraud, by insisting that “we may never know” if Hillary Clinton won the popular vote.
Tur asked Kobach if the commission exists “because the president believes he would have won the popular vote [were it not for illegal voters].”
Kobach denied that, saying,
“That is not the reason the commission exists. It’s not to justify, validate, or invalidate what the president said in December or January about the 2016 election.
“The commission is to look at the facts as they are, and go where the facts lead us on voter fraud and threats to the integrity of our elections.”
But Kobach certainly knows this simple fact: there are no “threats to the integrity of our elections” from the sources Trump claims: people voting twice, people casting ballots in the name of dead people, or undocumented immigrants voting. The Brennan Center For Justice pointed out in January that multiple studies have found that in-person voter fraud is exceedingly rare. Even if you took all of the documented cases of voter fraud over the past 10 years and multiplied them by 100, there would still not be enough illegal votes to change the result of an election.
Tur let Kobach have his say about the commission’s purpose, but she wasn’t quite done with Kobach regarding his claim about Clinton. She asked again, and again he answered that “we may never know.” “Really?” Tur pressed. “You really believe that?”
Kobach explained that even if the commission determined that a certain number of votes were cast illegally, “you still won’t know whether those people who were ineligible voted for Trump or for Clinton or for somebody else.”
But that’s not what Trump has said. He has made it quite clear that “millions” of illegal votes were cast — all for Clinton. Does Kris Kobach really want us to believe that the man who has whined for months that he was cheated out of a popular vote win by voter fraud would be willing to accept the notion that he was the recipient of even a single illegal vote? (Even though in one confirmed case of voter fraud from 2016, that’s exactly what happened.)
Kobach knows he can’t substantiate Trump’s claim. So he’s throwing him a bone by saying “we don’t know” if Hillary actually won the popular vote. But will that satisfy His Orange Highness? Don’t count on it.
Here’s Kris Kobach, acting like the weasel he is with Katy Tur:
Kris Kobach tells NBC anchor "We may never know the answer to that question" when asked if Hillary Clinton won the popular vote pic.twitter.com/nkGk8cZv60
— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) July 19, 2017