On November 28th The Washington Post reported “President-elect Donald Trump assured us all that a recount of the 2016 election wouldn’t change the outcome and was a waste of resources.” “Later Sunday, though, he made a real case that we should have no confidence in those same election results, alleging massive voter fraud.” In a tweet he said, “In addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally.” In another he said, “Serious voter fraud in Virginia, New Hampshire and California – so why isn’t the media reporting on this? Serious bias – big problem!”
Aron Blake writes,
Trump, of course, is pointing only to “fraud” that benefited Clinton; Virginia, New Hampshire and California are all states she won, and the baseless idea that illegal immigrants voted by the millions is supposed to have helped Clinton, given the fact that immigrants — and specifically undocumented ones — overwhelmingly favor Democrats.
Trump was doing this to make the case that he didn’t actually lose the popular vote, which has become a Democratic rallying cry following Clinton’s loss. It’s clearly a sore spot for Trump.
But the president-elect is also, unwittingly and amazingly, calling into question the results of an election that he won nearly three weeks ago. The logical extension of his argument is that all results should not be trusted. In effect, Trump is lending credence to the very same recount effort that he criticized as superfluous.
A caveat on all of this: There is absolutely no evidence of Trump’s alleged large-scale voter fraud. And even Clinton’s campaign, while joining in recount efforts initiated by Green Party nominee Jill Stein, has acknowledged as much. So I am not saying that there is suddenly a real reason to doubt the fact that Trump won the 2016 election.