Inspired by polls including exit polls for early voters, and high early voter turnout, there is optimism among supporters of the Democrat party that they could win the presidential election and attain a majority in Congress.
But, predictions of Democrat success appear to be assuming that the variety of Republican voter suppression tactics will not affect the result. The Republican party used the last four years to develop its voter suppression techniques and, over the final few months of Trump’s (first?) tenure, they have ramped up the strategy.
The techniques in operation for the election this year include (among others):
- Removal of voters from electoral roll for spurious reasons
- Enforcement of dubious Voter ID requirements
- Severe gerrymandering of districts
- Closure of in-person voting locations in majority Democrat districts
- Reduction of eligibility to vote by mail
- Removal and banning of drop-boxes for mail-in ballots in majority Democrat districts
- Spurious and random reasons for rejecting mail-in ballots
- Deliberate delays in counting mail-in ballots so that count is not done before cut-off time
- Physical destruction of counting machinery
- Refusal to count mail-in votes that “arrive after November 3rd“
- Spontaneous “failure” – technical or otherwise – at in-person voting locations when high turnout or long queue
- Use of Covid-19 as spurious excuse to close in-person voting locations when high turnout or long queue
- Computer “failures” that prevent or change votes at in-person voting locations
- Police attacks on people walking to polling locations
Democrat party supporters express joy at long queues of voters waiting patiently to vote, some for several hours, but many people will be deterred from voting by such long queues and the longest queues are in majority Democrat districts.
Trump and his fellow Republican politicians make persistent false accusations of voter fraud including invented stories of multiple voting and made-up claims of ballots being thrown away. This tactic is intended as both a distraction and as a prepared excuse for legal challenges if Republicans don’t win.
The balance of power in the Supreme Court, coupled with the abject lack of integrity of recent arrivals therein, means any legal challenges by Republicans will succeed and any by Democrats will fail.
If Trump wins then voter suppression will have played a major role in his success. The prospect of that scenario is why any polls should not be taken as indicative.
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