Unlike 2020, the GOP plans to ensure they win future elections they lose. To succeed, the party is damaging our election system with bias.
The New York Times wants you to know that, even while you’re sleeping, MAGA Republicans are hard at work subverting the country’s 2022 and 2024 elections infrastructure so that the GOP will win even if it loses.
A chilling new Times-produced video released Sept. 21—“Inside the Completely Legal Plot to Destroy American Democracy”—lays out the GOP’s grassroots strategy: to pack state election officials, local election boards and poll-worker teams with Trump partisans nationwide.
These devotees will be intent, the GOP believes, on avenging in 2022 and 2024 the now-defeated and former president’s election loss in 2020. Despite exhaustive debunking, fully 70 percent of Republicans still believe that the 2020 election was “stolen” from Trump due to “widespread fraud.”
By handpicking MAGA-friendly local elections officials and poll volunteers, and training them to hunt for fraud in battleground swing-state elections across the country, the GOP hopes to establish a deep database of fraud claims with which to credibly challenge future elections that Democrats objectively win.
Added to this tactic has been an effort—largely effective in Republic primaries this year—to elect MAGA candidates to top swing-state public offices, such as governor, attorney general and secretary of state, that variously control state and local elections. These officials manage how votes are counted and, most importantly, certified as accurate and final.
For example, the county commission in tiny Otero County, New Mexico, refused to certify its 2020 election results because commissioner Couy Griffin had a “gut feeling” that “something was off” with Dominion voting machines. Multiple audits have determined that Dominion machines are reliably accurate, and the state’s Supreme Court later forced the commission to certify.
It may not be difficult to guess where Griffin was on Jan. 6, 2021. He was caught on video at the U.S. Capitol during the MAGA (and Christian) insurrection, excitedly exclaiming, “This is a great day for America!”
The worry for Americans who value long-honored democratic values and norms is that the GOP’s overarching strategy is to spread Griffin-like election deniers at every level of the vote-certifying process in key battleground states across the country. And it’s completely legal, if not noble.
Imagine if the election-guardian secretary of state in New Mexico had been a MAGA Republican and decided to heed Griffin’s groundless intuition of election fraud and signed off on decertification of the results? Or if the state’s Supreme Court were stacked with MAGA Republicans?
As the Democratic Party, perhaps too late, realizes it must respond aggressively to this growing threat to actual election integrity, voting’s most important protective virtue—public trust in the process—is not only under siege but has been breached.