Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump told supporters in Manheim, Pennsylvania, on Oct. 1 to watch polling booths in "certain areas" on election day for voting fraud.
Trump warned a mostly white audience in the swing state how fraudulent voting could cost him the election, reports The Washington Post:
You've got to go out, and you've got to get your friends, and you've got to get everybody you know, and you gotta watch your polling booths, because I hear too many stories about Pennsylvania, certain areas. I hear too many bad stories, and we can't lose an election because of you know what I'm talking about. So, go and vote and then go check out areas because a lot of bad things happen, and we don't want to lose for that reason.
Trump said in August that the presidential election might be rigged, and explained his reasoning to The Washington Post at the time:
Well, I think its ridiculous. I mean the voter ID situation has turned out to be a very unfair development. We may have people vote 10 times. It’s inconceivable that you don’t have to show identification in order to vote or that that the identification doesn’t have to be somewhat foolproof...
I don’t want to jump the gun. I don’t want to talk about that. I’m just saying that I wouldn’t be surprised if the election ... there’s a lot of dirty pool played at the election, meaning the election is rigged. I would not be surprised. The voter ID, they’re fighting as hard as you can fight so that that they don’t have to show voter ID. So, what’s the purpose of that? How many times is a person going to vote during the day? If you don’t have voter ID . . .
ThinkProgress noted in August that in 2008 the U.S. Supreme Court cited only one instance of in-person voter fraud over the past 140 years in Indiana; a 2004 Wisconsin study on voter fraud found only seven cases out of 3 million voters; an Iowa study in 2014 turned up no incidents of in-person voter fraud.
Voter ID laws are often used to discourage minorities from voting, ThinkProgress reported, noting that when a Texas voter ID law was shot down by the courts in July, an expert testified during the case: "Hispanic registered voters and Black registered voters were respectively 195 percent and 305 percent more likely than their Anglo peers to lack" the types of ID required by the law.
According to ThinkProgress, a federal judge in North Dakota issued a temporary block against the state's voter ID law in August, and said: "[T]he record is replete with concrete evidence of significant burdens imposed on Native American voters attempting to exercise their right to vote."