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Jim Crawford: Rigging the election

President Trump has said: “The only way we’re going to lose this election is if the election is rigged.”

He should know, as the only candidate with actual “rigging” experience in his 2016 campaign, aided by the Russian government. According to the Republican-led Select Committee on Intelligence (fifth report), the Trump campaign worked directly with a Russian agent to help Trump win the U.S. presidency in 2016.

This year, we need to take Trump at his word, but his meaning may be slightly different than you think. The Russians are once again, according to U.S. Intelligence services, working on behalf of Trump to sway the 2020 election in his favor. So, what the president may mean about a rigged election is, if all of his efforts to rig the outcome fail, then he will claim the results false, because he knows he rigged it to win. It is the old story of the boy who murdered his parents only to ask the court for mercy because he is an orphan.

We already know the president is willing to undermine the most popular U.S. agency, the Postal Service, to stop Americans, during a pandemic, from voting at home. His theory is that, if he causes you to have to risk your life to vote, you may just stay home and not vote. But, in case you still do vote by mail-in ballot, he has fond hopes that your vote will be bungled by his destruction of the Postal Service.

But Trump is not counting only upon the Post Office and the Russians to vault him to victory, he has other schemes at work too. The Justice Department has a policy not to say or do anything 90 days before a presidential election that would in any way, interfere with the outcome of the election. But Attorney General William Barr, Trump Protector-in-Chief, has said he will ignore that policy and publish any damaging news he can about Trump’s opponent, Joe Biden.

Barr has assigned DOJ attorney Joe Durham to investigate the investigators of Trump’s corruption-ridden 2016 campaign (six individuals convicted of felonies, one still charged). To date, one FBI individual has pleaded guilty to falsifying a document in the case. But Barr hopes to conclude the investigation and then do “a Mueller” misrepresentation of the case conclusion just prior to the election, slamming Biden somehow for Trump’s criminal friends being caught. If all of that sounds contrived, welcome to the club.

And, if that does not do the job, the Republican Senate currently has not one, but two, committees investigating the very same investigation of the investigators. Sen. Ron Johnson R-Wisconsin, says his investigation will help Donald Trump win re-election. Sen. Lindsey Graham, chair of the other investigating committee is more circumspect but is working hard to discover similar attacks on Biden. You may recall these same Republicans gave us the endless Benghazi investigations.

Beyond all of those corruptions, the Trump team plans to have 20,000 “election monitors” at minority polling locations to challenge voters and attempt to deter voters of color.

And the president is suing the states of New Jersey and Nevada to prevent them from using mail-in voting while he encourages Florida, a state he hopes to win, to use mail-in voting.

Finally, the President wants DOJ staff and Sheriffs to be at polling locations in democratic areas to oversee the “integrity” of the vote.

Yes, all in all, this president certainly knows about rigged elections. What he does not know is the voters will still have the final say and, if he loses the election, he will leave the White House on Jan. 20, 2021.

Jim Crawford is a retired educator and political enthusiast living here in the Tri-State.