- Trump cited, among other things, the COVID-19 pandemic as a reason to delay the elections.
- Trump hasn't found a favorable reception in either House of Congress.
- The US President suggested the possible postponement of the election through an early Thursday tweet.
President Donald Trump’s suggestion to delay the 2020 elections, scheduled for November 3, has led to one of the few occasions when the leaders of the Republican Party have opposed a president from their party. The determination of the date of the elections corresponds, according to the Constitution, to the organs of the Congress.
Trump, who since his rise to power has dominated the party with an iron fist– promoting candidates with his support, marginalizing whoever raises his voice– has had has decision to delay the election strongly opposed from among senior members of his Republican Party.
Trump cited, among other things, the COVID-19 pandemic as a reason to delay the elections. The House of Representatives is under a Democratic majority, and its rejection of Trump’s proposal, for the delay, is almost definite.
However the president hasn’t found a good reception in the Republican-dominated Senate either. Its leader in the upper house, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), rejected it in full.
“Never in the history of this country, through wars, depressions and the Civil War, have we ever not had a federally scheduled election on time. We will find a way to do that again this November third,” Sen. McConnell told local TV station WNKY.
Notably, another one of Trump’s main allies in the Senate, Lindsay Graham (R-SC), also opposed Trump’s suggestion, opining that the proposal wasn’t “a good idea.”
“I think that’s probably a statement that gets some press attention, but I doubt it gets any serious traction,” said Sen. John Thune (R-SD). “I think we’ve had elections every November since about 1788, and I expect that will be the case again this year,” he added.
The US President suggested the possible postponement of the election through an early Thursday tweet, in which he wrote thus:
“With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???”
In defending his proposal, Trump clarified that he is keen on a free and credible election, in which the results, as always, are known on Election Night, “not days, months or even years.”
Many states are however promoting vote-by-mail to prevent the virus from spreading. Through that way, it would take at least several days to know whether Trump gets reelected or whether America gets a new President in the Democrat, Joe Biden.
Trump’s suggestion for the delay of the election comes at a time when his rival, Joe Biden, is leading in the nation’s various opinion polls. Some polls give the Democratic candidate a fifteen-point lead, while RealClearPolitics’ cumulative polls give a distance of nearly nine points.
Last month, Trump reshuffled his reelection campaign team, and demoted then-director Brad Parscale, while he promoted Bill Stephen to take over the team’s leadership.
It is worth noting that Since January, the Trump campaign has so far spent a whooping $202 million on digital and television ads, while the Biden team has so far spent $95 million.