Polls show that most Republicans mistakenly think that the 2020 elections were not legitimate

These polls are the latest to indicate that Republicans mistakenly think the 2020 election was not legitimate, when it clearly was.

What is the point: Republicans have been pushing for state-level legislation to make voting at least somewhat more difficult than it was for the 2020 election. This has come in the wake of polls showing that many Republicans doubt the outcome of the elections. elections. It is unclear what effect this legislation will ultimately have on future election results.

What is perfectly clear, however, is that Republicans’ lack of faith in our current electoral infrastructure is a direct result of Trump’s historic efforts to undermine the legitimacy of the 2020 results.

After Trump left the White House in January, Monmouth University asked Americans if they thought the 2020 election was conducted fairly and with confidence. In general, the majority (66%) believed that it was.

But the bulk of Republicans (65%) disagreed, saying they had no confidence at all that the election was conducted fairly and accurately, which is consistent with the Ipsos poll mentioned above. This 65% is truly an anomaly of late.

After each election from 2004 to 2016, the Pew Research Center asked voters if they were confident that votes across the country were being accurately counted.

The voters of the losing candidate in those elections had much more faith than the voters of Trump in the results of the 2020 elections. In all of the elections from 2004 to 2016, between 8% and 14% of the voters of the losing candidate said that they had no confidence that the choice was legitimate. In 2016, only 11% of Hillary Clinton voters did not have any confidence.

This means that Republicans are 40 to 50 points more likely this time to say they were not confident in the results than supporters of any losing candidate of late.

The big difference this time around is that the losing candidate casts open doubts about the results over and over again.

Republicans’ doubts arise despite a clear margin for Biden in the swing states that made a difference. Trump would have had to have won at least three states that he lost by more than 10,000 votes (one that he lost by more than 20,000) to simply prevent Biden from reaching 270 electoral votes.
Trump’s margins on Clinton in the pivotal states were similar to Biden’s on Trump in terms of percentage points, but Clinton voters had no doubts about the results.
Trump’s false accusations have certainly changed the way Republicans think about who should be able to vote. Last month, Pew asked Americans whether citizens should show that they really want to vote by registering early or if everything possible should be done to make it easier for all citizens to vote.

Today, only 28% of Republicans say that everything possible should be done to make it easier for citizens to vote. That compares with 71% who say citizens should have to show that they really want to vote.

In 2018 (before Trump lost), the divide was much closer at 48% of Republicans who believed voting should be as easy as possible to the 51% who thought voters should have to show it.

(Democrats, by comparison, have barely moved on the issue with 85% arguing that voting should be as easy as possible. That was 84% ​​in 2018).

The only thing that really changed between 2018 and 2021 was the 2020 elections.

It should be noted that Republicans are a minority on this issue. The majority of Americans (59%) say that everything possible should be done to make it as easy as possible for citizens to vote.

Perhaps most importantly, it is not at all clear that efforts to appease those who have doubts about the system really work.

We can see this by looking at studies of voter photo ID laws, which many Republicans have endorsed to ensure that those who vote are who they say they are.

Most Americans (72%) favor them, according to a new AP / NORC poll. That makes it one of the few Republican-driven electoral reforms that most Americans agree with.
The problem is that studies show that having voter identification laws does not actually increase confidence in the legitimacy of the electoral process. There are many reasons to doubt that the Republican push to change current electoral laws will actually give Republicans more faith in the system.

People who believe conspiracy theories find ways to disbelieve the truth.

What would really help people have more faith in our electoral process is that if Trump and other Republicans stopped lying to their voters and admitted the truth: Biden won the election legitimately.


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