Photo by Gage Skidmore, Creative Commons license 2.0

Joe Biden told supporters during a fundraiser Wednesday that he's ready for any voter suppression tomfoolery Donald Trump may throw at the 2020 election, with a team of 600 lawyers all over the country who are prepared to make sure voters can vote.

Biden was asked what he planned to do about the "very real concern" that Trump would would try to keep registered voters from voting, reports USA Today.

"Well, first of all, to continue to shout from the rooftops: 'Be careful — he's coming,'" Biden replied.

Biden, who has previously said he fears Trump will try to "steal" the election, said Trump and Republicans are pursuing a "systematic program on vote suppression" that could pose a serious obstacle amid the coronavirus outbreak

Just shout from the rooftops? Maybe we need a backup plan, like sending Paul Revere to warn Trump he can't take our votes, just ringin' those bells and makin' sure as he's riding his horse through town to send those warning shots and bells that our election's gonna be secure and we're gonna stay free, also too.


Biden added,

So here's what we're doing, we're continuing to fight any effort to exploit the pandemic for political purposes, support the countless state and local officials working like hell to make voting safe and accessible for citizens, especially the most vulnerable, or call out local rules that don't adequately ensure access to vote.

In addition to the 600 lawyers, Biden said 10,000 volunteers would be in every single state to keep an eye out to see if any "chicanery is likely to take place." Biden warned that Trump's repeated — and utterly false — tweets claiming that voting by mail leads to fraud indicate Trump may well try to block absentee voting, as could Trump's weird animus against the Postal Service because it delivers packages for Amazon.

The fact is that this is a fella who is literally trying to take away the funding for the post office so they can't deliver the ballots. Not a joke.

Truth sandwich time: In mere reality, there are lots of measures states take to ensure the security of mail-in voting, and absentee voting fraud is extremely rare. And usually, when some idiot tries to get away with it, it's fairly easy for elections officials to recognize. The five states that hold their elections entirely by mail have remarkably clean elections. Yes, even that socialist outpost Utah.

With that in mind, let's look at another of Trump's recent bullshit claims, in which he insisted, in all caps, that

MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WILL BE PRINTED BY FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AND OTHERS. IT WILL BE THE SCANDAL OF OUR TIMES!

Trump was repeating an equally fake claim by Attorney General Bill Barr, who told Fox News that evil foreign meddlers could "print up tens of thousands of counterfeit ballots, and it'd be very hard for us to detect which was the right and which was the wrong ballot." That's just not so, as Lawrence Norden, who directs the Brennan Center for Justice's Election Reform Program, explained shortly after Trump and Barr made the claims. The whole idea of widespread absentee ballot forgery was "nonsense," he said:

"It doesn't make any sense as an attack against our election system. [...] It would be too easy to catch. You just wouldn't be able to do it. There's obviously other ways – cyber warfare – of attacking election infrastructure. I think we have to be worried about them. But forging mail ballots is not a serious threat."

Norden said the "most obvious" reason foreign interference over vote-by-mail isn't practical is that mail-in ballots must be returned in a secrecy envelope created by local election authorities. He said the envelopes are bar-coded in many states with a unique identifier that ties the ballot to the voter.

The secrecy envelopes also require personal information that only the voter should have – the last four digits of a voter's Social Security number and the voter's signature, Norden said. Mail ballots in several states rely on signature-verification tools to check voter authenticity.

None of which means that the Trump campaign is likely to back off from its bullshit fights against letting people vote. Asked to comment on Biden's call for vigilance against Republican efforts to suppress the vote, Trump campaign spokeslizard senior counsel Justin Clark warned the real potential for skulduggery will come from Democrats, who he said "are the ones trying to fundamentally change how we vote," because apparently voting by mail, which has been used for decades, and which five states use for virtually all elections, is a new scary thing invented just this year, along with flying machines. "They are inserting chaos and confusion into our voting process because it is the only way they can win," Clark said, apparently unaware of the logo on his forehead reading "Bell and Howell Projectors."

Biden told his supporters he would continue to speak out against Trump's efforts to prevent voting by mail, because telling people they need to risk their health to vote in person during a pandemic is nothing short of voter suppression. He encouraged folks to "to holler at the top of our lungs" if they see state officials trying to limit absentee voting, adding that getting a fair election this year is "going to be hard. And if it's close – watch out."

We would feel a lot better about Biden's army of election lawyers, all in all, if they were perhaps accompanied by some dark elf mages able to cast "Secure Election."

[USA Today / Brennan Center / USA Today / Photo by Gage Skidmore, Creative Commons license 2.0]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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