In the wake of reports that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump made improper sexual advances towards as many as eight women, the candidate has amplified his concerns that the November election could be stolen, giving Democrat Hillary Clinton an undeserved victory. The possibility of voter fraud was first brought up by Trump in August, when he said at a Pennsylvania rally, “We’re going to watch Pennsylvania. Go down to certain areas and watch and study make sure other people don’t come in and vote five times.”
Trump pressed the theme this week, worrying about a stolen election at a Monday rally in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, according to a story in the New York Times. He continued to press the idea of a stolen election at rallies in Florida and Ohio on Thursday.
Trump’s statements have caused concern among Democrats, who worry about voter suppression. In the Times’s story, Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams shares her concerns:
“He’s using phrases like ‘rigged election’ to incite his followers to rig the election by using tactics like voter intimidation, and I don’t think it’s particularly subtle, and I don’t think he cares about the integrity of our elections,” said Stacey Abrams, the Democratic minority leader of the Georgia House of Representatives.
Ms. Abrams, who is African-American and has worked on voting-rights issues, is also the founder of the New Georgia Project, a voter registration and engagement effort in the state. She said Mr. Trump was employing a “voter intimidation model.”
“Just scare them away from the polling place,” she said. “That’s his crude form of voter suppression — not particularly artful, but effective.”
Historically, there have been few documented cases of voter fraud in the United States.