Donald Trump's dangerous rhetoric is now openly threatening to ignite a crisis in confidence among the American voter weeks before the election even happens.
Donald Trump has repeatedly called this year's presidential election rigged and has coyly said "I will keep you in suspense” on whether he would accept a Hillary Clinton victory, but many Republicans are less circumspect, according to a new poll.
Only half of Republicans would accept Clinton, the Democratic nominee, as their president. And if she wins, nearly 70 percent said it would be because of illegal voting or vote rigging, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Friday.
Conversely, seven out of 10 Democrats said they would accept a Trump victory and less than 50 percent would attribute it to illegal voting or vote rigging, the poll showed.
The findings come after repeated statements by Trump that the media and the political establishment have rigged the election against him. He also has made a number of statements encouraging his supporters to fan out on Election Day to stop ineligible voters from casting ballots.
The U.S. government has accused Russia of a campaign of cyber attacks against Democratic Party organizations and state election systems.
Clinton has said she will accept the results of the election no matter the outcome.
The poll showed there is broad concern across the political spectrum about voting issues such as ineligible voters casting ballots, voter suppression, and the actual vote count, but Republicans feel that concern more acutely.
For example, nearly eight out of 10 Republicans are concerned about the accuracy of the final vote count. And though generally they believe they will be able to cast their ballot, only six out of 10 are confident their vote will be counted accurately.
Among Democrats, about six out of 10 are concerned about the vote count. They, too, believe they wi1l be able to cast their ballot, but eight out of 10 are confident their vote will be counted accurately.
The problem with this idiotic "both-siderism" is that there's very real evidence that Democratic voter suppression is happening in red states and the fact that this will be the first presidential election since the Roberts Supreme Court neutered the Voting Rights Act, and the latter especially will have serious consequences.
This year's presidential election will be the first in a half-century without the significant presence of federal observers at polling places. That's because in 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, and when the court wiped out that section, the statute that provided for election observers went, too.
The landmark decision in Shelby County v. Holder doesn't mean civil rights officials are totally disarmed. The Justice Department will still send out "hundreds" of "monitors" to oversee Election Day compliance. But the number is smaller than it was before, and monitors can only enter the polling place if local officials agree. Observers, by contrast, had a statutory right to be inside polling places. They were trained specifically for the task. There also were many more of them, and they had far more authority than monitors.
"We can't deny the costs of Shelby County" in terms of enforcement powers, says Vanita Gupta, assistant attorney general for civil rights.
"The hope is that just by having the presence of the federal government at polling sites, even if we may be slightly more diminished or spread thinner, that our sheer presence has sufficient deterrent effect and gives voters the confidence that they need to feel like the process is fair," she adds.
Gupta says she expects federal monitors to fan out over half the states on Election Day.
None of these monitors, however, will have the automatic legal clout that observers did. Unlike monitors, observers typically were stationed inside polling places to watch partisan poll watchers and to make sure rights were enforced. They would also verify that the number of voters jibed with final vote tallies. Indeed, they could even go inside the polling booth to make sure assistors were accurately recording the votes of people who needed help casting their ballots.
Gerry Hebert, who served in the voting section of the Justice Department for 21 years, says the presence of federal monitors is "good as far as it goes, but it doesn't really replace that kind of on-site complete oversight within the polling place."
So yeah, that's what the real issue is, Donald.