United States Attorney General William Barr has suggested that an election that primarily uses vote-by-mail will not be safe, but he admits that he has no evidence to support his claim.
Speaking to NPR on Thursday, the attorney general was asked if he believes an election that is voted primarily by mail can be implemented without widespread fraud.
“Personally, no,” he replied. “I mean, we just mailed checks under this program. And what is that? I heard that something like 20 percent or something was misdirected, ”added Barr, referring to the coronavirus stimulus tests.
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A report released by the Government Accountability Office on Thursday revealed that more than $ 1 billion (£ 809.5 billion) in stimulus funds was sent to people who were already dead, according to CNN.
However, stimulus checks were sent automatically, while to vote by mail, a US citizen has to register and request to receive a ballot.
Even though the two processes use a different system, the attorney general stated that the same problems could occur with voting by mail and told NPR: “I know that things can happen like this.
“Since I know that people move, a very high percentage in the United States, people move all the time. And I also know that you can easily get things out of mailboxes. “
The attorney general clarified that he was not referring to the levels of voting by mail that generally occur in an election, but rather the most common way to vote.
Barr added: “There are so many occasions of fraud there that they cannot be watched. I think it would be very bad. “
When asked if he had any evidence for his claims, the 70-year-old man replied, “No, it’s obvious.”
Barr’s comments echo those of President Donald Trump, who last month falsely claimed that voting by mail will allow “thousands of counterfeits,” despite voting by mail in Florida in March for the Republican primaries.
Trump has repeatedly spoken publicly against people being able to vote by mail in this year’s presidential election, saying without evidence that it will cause a huge spike in voter fraud.
Officials from the Democratic and Republican parties have called for mail voting to be implemented for the November presidential election, due to logistical concerns about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
However, last month, the president tweeted: “The United States cannot have all ballots in the mail. It will be the largest electoral election in history. ”
He then added, without citing any evidence, that “people take them from mailboxes, print thousands of forgeries and ‘force’ people to sign. Also, they forge names.