White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany responded Tuesday to President Trump's encouraging of voting by mail in Florida after criticizing it for months.
- The president, about 10 minutes ago, tweeted about vote by mail absentee voting. He says in Florida, the election system is safe and secure, tried and true. What is his view changed? Was he advised by Republicans that he was potentially suppressing his own vote by stoking unfounded fears about mail-in voting, and will he admit now what is the fact, that voting across the country by mail is safe and secure and tried and true?
KAYLEIGH MCENANY: Well, the president has always said that absentee voting, for a reason, is different than mass mail-out voting, like what Nevada is seeking to do, which leads to mass fraud.
- It's the same thing.
KAYLEIGH MCENANY: And also-- I'd refer you to the campaign on this-- but there was a victory in Florida with regard to ballots. So I believe that's what he was referencing. I would refer you to the campaign for details on that. But he's been unmistakably clear that when you have this mass mail-out voting, like what Nevada wants to do, the consequences are real.
When the "Las Vegas Journal Review" was reporting-- did extensive and very good reporting on Nevada's first all-mail primary election-- they note that there were photos of ballots tossed in trash cans, littering apartment mailbox areas, dozens pinned on the complexes' bulletin boards in various apartment complexes. And you have a postal worker who said that when she went to go deliver some of these ballots, in several cases, people had moved or died. She kept 65 ballots on her first delivery, 100 on her second. It is rife with fraud and with delay, and that is what the president stands firmly against. He wants a free and fair election.
- Extensive research shows that there is fraud in vote by mail systems is extraordinarily rare. The president votes by mail. You vote by mail. And a dozen other top administration officials vote by mail.
KAYLEIGH MCENANY: So with regard to the absentee system, that's right. And there is ample evidence of fraud. I would point to the best example of this, and very recent, was May 12, New Jersey's special election in Paterson, New Jersey, where one in five mail-in ballots were found to be fraudulent in the election. New Jersey officials were charged in that case.
And resident Ramona Javier said this is corruption. This is fraud. There are eight relatives and immediate neighbors she knows of listed as having voted, but who insist they never even received a ballot. There are ample examples of fraud. And we can get those to you, more than just Paterson, New Jersey.
- And the president is tweeting-- you answered a question about this-- mail-in voting, or absentee voting, whatever you call it, he is saying, essentially, it's the same thing. So why is it now something that can be done in Florida but not in other states? Why is that the appropriate thing to do?
KAYLEIGH MCENANY: He's always made the distinction-- mass mail-out voting is with Nevada, where ballots are mailed en masse out to the voter rolls. So in a place like LA, for instance, where 112% of LA county is registered, ballots go out. And at least 12% of those we know are not active voters.
So that is the distinction from absentee voting, which is where you proactively request an absentee ballot. There's a difference there, and the president repeatedly makes the difference. And he is also noting, as I told Jack-- you can follow up with the campaign on this-- but there was a victory in the courts in Florida, and that's what he was referencing in the tweet. Yes.