“This man was elected president of the United States of America,” Joe Biden declared of Al Gore during a 2013 campaign event when introducing George W. Bush’s Democrat opponent.
“There’s no doubt that the Russians did interfere in the election, and I think the interference, although not yet quantified, if fully investigated would show that Trump didn’t actually win the election in 2016,” former President Jimmy Carter proclaimed during a 2019 panel discussion sponsored by his nonprofit organization.
“He knows he’s an illegitimate president,” Hillary Clinton seethed when asked about Donald Trump during a CBS interview nearly two years ago, later telling the audience the election was stolen from her.
“Rush thought we won, and so do I,” Trump said in an interview with Fox News following radio personality Rush Limbaugh’s death in February 2021, later calling the contest “the fraudulent presidential election of 2020.”
Three different presidential elections and four different presidential candidates all claimed the man inaugurated commander-in-chief stole the election. Yet while tolerating claims that Clinton and Gore actually won the White House, the corrupt media immediately co-opted the Nazi comparison Joe Biden deployed in response to Trump’s claims of fraud, branding his charges “The Big Lie.”
A Highly Useful Smear Since November
Democrats and their paramours in the press didn’t limit the catchphrase to Trump’s claims of widespread fraud during the 2020 election. Rather, when confronted with evidence of illegal voting, disregard of election laws, or states’ violations of the Elector’s Clause of the Constitution, the left casts the complaints as all part of “The Big Lie.” Following the January 6, 2021, assault on our capitol, Democrats need only brandish “The Big Lie” slogan to silence those fearing to be accused of being responsible for, complicit in, or apologists for, the riots.
The Left knows this and has sharpened sickles for Sens. Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley, who raised constitutional objections to counting Arizona and Pennsylvania’s electors. They also wielded this weapon to sow further division in the Republican caucus when the GOP decided to remove Rep. Liz Cheney from her leadership position. The press and politicians also brandish “The Big Lie” talking point to discredit investigations into voting irregularities, such as in Arizona.
The most effective use of “The Big Lie” storyline, however, has been weaponizing that narrative to mute the growing evidence of widespread illegal voting and other election irregularities and to combat efforts by state legislatures to enact voter-integrity laws.
When The Federalist broke news recently that evidence indicates more than 10,300 Georgia voters cast illegal ballots in the 2020 presidential election, corporate media kept mum, while FactCheck framed the reporting under the header of “More Trump Election Distortions.” Then, after a local Atlanta investigative journalist went door-to-door confirming that yes, voters on the list of more than 10,300 names had moved counties, as reported, the chief operating officer for the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office excused illegal voting in the wrong county as “ordinary Georgians” just exercising their right to vote.
Republican Capitulation Doesn’t Spare Them
That a top official with the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office would defend apparent violations of state election law calls into question the seriousness of the office’s supposedly ongoing investigation into whether those 10,300-plus Georgians voted illegally, especially given that Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger has also adopted “The Big Lie” narrative.
Predictably, co-opting “The Big Lie” slur from anti-Trump partisans hasn’t saved Raffensperger from attacks from the left: Earlier this month the Biden administration’s Department of Justice filed a highly politicized and frivolous lawsuit against Raffensperger and the state of Georgia, charging the state’s newly adopted voting-integrity statute violates the Voting Rights Amendment.
In challenging Georgia’s Election Integrity Act of 2021, Biden’s attorney general, Merrick B. Garland, focused heavily on “the accusations of fraud around the absentee voting process and the tabulation of votes,” that “circulated widely” following the 2020 election, “despite a dearth of evidence.” The DOJ then argued in its complaint that “the lack of evidence of voter fraud in the 2020 election cycle, and numerous statements from the Secretary of State’s office debunking voter fraud claims, tend to undermine the justifications proffered by proponents of” the law.
‘The Big Lie’ Claim Is a Dodge
Before these filings, Biden had attacked Georgia’s voting-integrity law as “Jim Crow in the 21st century.” While Democrats’ current focus is Georgia, the talking-point of the party (and the press) is that voting rights are “under attack by GOP-controlled states ‘after Republicans seized on former President Donald Trump’s false claim of massive voter fraud in the 2020 election as a pretext for passing new legislation curtailing ballot access.’”
Biden later repeated the Jim Crow canard in pushing H.R. 1, the so-called “For the People Act,” which could gut many mainstream state statutes designed to ensure voting integrity, such as voter ID laws. In a speech in Philadelphia earlier this month, after branding state election-integrity laws a “21st-century Jim Crow assault,” the president sought to connect Trump’s attacks on the validity of the 2020 election—calling it both “the Big Lie” and “the most significant test of our democracy since the Civil War”—the January 6, 2021 storming of the capitol, and the supposed imperative for passage of H.R. 1.
There is a dangerous confluence of factors at play here that has permeated the press’ coverage of election-related matters. By coloring all criticism of the 2020 election as part of The Big Lie, the left allows itself to ignore evidence of actual fraud, widespread illegal voting, violations of the Elector’s Clause, and, frankly, just plain incompetence.
Politically, this approach may currently serve Democrats’ interests because their guy won, but our country is too divided to survive in the long-term if half the populace believes the election was rigged. And while the left blames Trump for “Republicans’ lack of faith in our current election infrastructure,” the evidence tells a different story.
Lack of Trust in Election Integrity Is Bipartisan
Trump didn’t cause Biden to declare Gore the rightful president. Nor did Trump cause Carter and Clinton to claim the latter won the 2016 election, unless you hold him responsible for Trump Derangement Syndrome.
Trump also bears no blame for the fact that 37 percent of Americans surveyed in 2016 believed Russia definitely or probably “tampered with vote tallies in order to get Donald Trump elected President,” with 52 percent of Democrats polled believing such hacking of voting systems took place. By 2018 the percentage of all Americans who believed a foreign country had definitely or probably altered vote totals in Trump’s favor jumped to 42 percent of all Americans and a whopping 67 percent of Democrats.
A comparison of the perceptions of the 2016 and 2020 presidential contests likewise exposes a nonpartisan distrust in election results across America. Only 51 percent of all Americans polled believed Trump won the 2016 election fairly, with that percentage dropping to 21 percent of Democrats. When asked if Trump won the presidency in 2016 because of Russian interference, 62 percent of Democrat respondents answered affirmatively and so did 33 percent of all respondents.
When questioned about Biden’s victory in 2020, a higher percentage of all respondents, 57 percent believed the former vice president won “fairly,” including 28 percent of Republicans. Overall, 34 percent of respondents believed Biden won because of voter fraud, while 61 percent of Republicans polled shared that view.
That a majority of both Democrats and Republicans believe the opposing party’s candidate won the presidential election because of voter fraud or the hacking of votes by a foreign power demonstrates the issue concerns election integrity, not Trump. Yet the left is leading the country down the path of less election integrity by pushing for H.R. 1, which will destroy many of the safeguards designed to protect the American electoral system. As 2020 taught us, those safeguards are woefully insufficient.
Why We Should Not Tolerate Any Voting Errors
Nonetheless, the refrain seems to run that any problems seen in 2020 would not have changed the outcome of the election. First, that is not necessarily true.
Second, so what? Every fraudulent and illegal vote disenfranchises a legal voter, and just as we as a country would not tolerate the disenfranchisement of any voters by locking the ballot box to them, we should not tolerate the disenfranchisement of any legal voter by acquiescing to the stuffing of the ballot box by a non-dispositive number of voters.
Third and most importantly, our country is too divided to survive unless both the right and the left trust the outcome of the election. Here, we are not merely talking about the presidency. Since Republicans’ victory in 1994 gaining control of the House for the first time in 40 years, a slim margin has separated the majority and minority parties in both the House and the Senate.
Further, with enough individual House and Senate races to flip the majority having been decided by narrow margins of victory, confidence in election results is imperative. Such trust in election results proves especially important given the deep divide on not just matters of policy and priority, but core American values.
Elections are too tight and the populace too divided for “close enough for government work” to cut it anymore. The American voting system must be reformed to ensure security, transparency, replicability, and election officials’ uniform compliance with state election law.
Not only would the passage of H.R. 1 do the opposite, but by branding time, place, and manner regulations of voting “Jim Crow 2.0,” Democrats have guaranteed that the failure to pass H.R. 1 will render their next election loss illegitimate in the eyes of their voters. Given this, Democrats likely view H.R. 1 as offering them a win-win scenario. But any short-term political victory to them will come at a great cost to our country.
Americans should see 2020 and the January 6 riot as a wake-up call to the future our nation faces should election integrity not be restored. And the left is naïve to think that its voters, who raided the capitol to protest the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh and torched Saint John’s Church, will peacefully accept a loss marketed to them as racist by Democrats, the media, Major League Baseball, and corporate America.