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Trump: ‘If You Count The Legal Votes, I Easily Win The Election!’

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President Donald Trump‘s press secretary Thursday afternoon tweeted out a statement from him in which he appears to discredit ballots that are still being counted and still arriving at election clerk offices, claiming that they are illegal and don’t help him win if they are counted.

The all-caps statement in the tweet from Press Sec. Kayleigh McEnany kept it brief.

“IF YOU COUNT THE LEGAL VOTES, I EASILY WIN THE ELECTION!” the president’s statement read. “IF YOU COUNT THE ILLEGAL AND LATE VOTES, THEY CAN STEAL THE ELECTION FROM US!”

While he gives no specific context to his statement, Trump is likely talking about ballots that arrive at election clerk offices late, even if postmarked on or before Election Day. He has routinely made claims that such ballots are illegal and shouldn’t be counted. His campaign has even filed lawsuits to halt the vote counts in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Georgia, with such claims forming part of his team’s legal arguments alongside other claims of voter fraud. Some of these lawsuits have been struck down, however, such as the one in Georgia.

Many ballots are still arriving at counting centers and being counted, something which is legal to varying parameters between the states.

Votes are still being counted in many places because many states don’t allow election workers to count the ballots before Election Day, which created million-ballot backlogs of uncounted votes that had to be tallied on Election Day—on top of the votes cast in person on that day too. Additionally, these state laws allow such ballots to be counted if received by a certain date because the unprecedented amount of ballots sent through the mail are traveling slowly through the overwhelmed U.S. Postal Service, whose service has slowed down due to all of this.

No independent authority has declared an official winner of this presidential election yet, with millions of ballots left to be counted in states currently with paper-thin margins between President Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Elections

CNN announces controversial presidential debate rules obviously intended to benefit Biden

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CNN announced its several presidential debate rules over the weekend sparking controversy. The rules will govern the upcoming debate between former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden on June 27. A

After Trump publicly stated he would debate the president “any time and any where” the Biden campaign agreed to a total of two debates that would be closely regulated. Not only did the administration demand a ban on audiences, it also approved CNN’s Jake Tapper and Dana Bash as its moderators. Breitbart reports Tapper is one of Trump’s sharpest critics.

CNN announced its own additional parameters on Saturday, which likely were done in partnership with the White House:

  • Two commercial breaks (Likely to benefit Biden)
  • Campaign staff will not be able to interact with their candidate during the break
  • No opening statements, two-minute closing statements
  • Two-minute answer shot clock, one minute for rebuttals
  • Mics will be muted “except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak” (Likely to benefit Biden)

CNN reported its rules:

The 90-minute debate will include two commercial breaks, according to the network, and campaign staff may not interact with their candidate during that time. Both candidates agreed to appear at a uniform podium, and their podium positions will be determined by a coin flip.

Microphones will be muted throughout the debate except for the candidate whose turn it is to speak. While no props or pre-written notes will be allowed on the stage, candidates will be given a pen, a pad of paper and a bottle of water.

Some aspects of the debate – including the absence of a studio audience – will be a departure from previous debates. But, as in the past, the moderators “will use all tools at their disposal to enforce timing and ensure a civilized discussion,” according to the network.

Breitbart reports that the President is planning to spend about a week preparing to debate Trump who has also requested Biden receive a drug test before the debates. The White House did not respond in May as to whether Biden intends to use performance-enhancing drugs in preparation for the presidential debates.

Ron Klain, Biden’s former chief of staff who is going on vacation to help Biden prepare for the debates, did not respond to Politico Playbook’s request for comment about “whether any illegal substances are used as part of Klain’s debate prep.”

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