US President Donald Trump has suggested he could sign an executive order pertaining to universal mail-in voting in the 2020 presidential race, arguing he has the authority to do so while reiterating warnings of election fraud.
As a number of states look to expand mail-in ballots for the November election amid concerns about the coronavirus, the president has repeatedly denounced the practice, telling reporters at a White House press conference on Monday that he could issue an executive order on the matter, though he did not specify what action he might take.
“I have the right to do it,” Trump said, arguing that a mailed-in election would be a “great embarrassment to our country,” but noted: “We haven’t gotten there yet, we’ll see what happens.”
In an illegal late night coup, Nevada’s clubhouse Governor made it impossible for Republicans to win the state. Post Office could never handle the Traffic of Mail-In Votes without preparation. Using Covid to steal the state. See you in Court! https://t.co/cNSPINgCY7
While it remains unclear what the executive branch could do to stop voters from casting ballots by mail, the president also vowed to bring the issue to the courts, saying he plans to sue the Nevada state government after lawmakers there approved a measure over the weekend to send mail-in ballots to all voters. Tweeting earlier on Monday, Trump called the move an “illegal late night coup,” saying it “made it impossible for Republicans to win the state” and rounding out the post with “see you in court!”
Most election rules and procedures are managed at state level, with the rest either set in stone by the US Constitution or left up to Congress. Though Trump could issue a directive formally outlining his stance on the practice, an American president has never moved to curtail or limit mail-in voting, and any attempt to do so may trigger staunch opposition in the courts.
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