President Donald Trump is serious about his claims that voter fraud influenced the last election.
Vice President Mike Pence said that Trump has ordered "a full evaluation of voting rolls in the country and the overall integrity of our voting system in the wake of this past election," according to audio obtained by the Guardian.
Trump has repeatedly claimed that between 3 and 5 million people voted illegally during the 2016 presidential election to explain why he host the popular vote by more than 3 million votes, despite any evidence to back up that claim.
In an interview with ABC News, Trump referenced a 2014 study originally published in the peer-review Elections Studies and now available in full on Judicial Watch. That study claims that 14 percent of non-citizens were registered to vote and, of that group, 6.4 percent voted in the 2008 election, according to numbers from a Cooperative Congressional Election Study that included 339 total non-citizen respondents in 2008.
"Because non-citizens tended to favor Democrats (Obama won more than 80 percent of the votes of non-citizens in the 2008 CCES sample), we find that this participation was large enough to plausibly account for Democratic victories in a few close elections," the authors of the study, Jesse Richman and David Earnest, wrote in the Washington Post.
But Richman, a professor at Old Dominion University, said that his study does not back up Trump's claims.
"Is it plausible that non-citizen votes added to Clinton’s margin. Yes," Richman wrote in a blog on his university's website. "Is it plausible that non-citizen votes account for the entire nation-wide popular vote margin held by Clinton? Not at all."
"If the percentage of non-citizens voting for Clinton is held constant, roughly 18.5 percent of non-citizens would have had to vote for their votes to have made up the entire Clinton popular vote margin. I don’t think that this rate is at all plausible," Richman explained. "Even if we assume that 90 percent voted for Clinton and only 10 percent for Trump, a more than fourteen percent turnout would be necessary to account for Clinton’s popular vote margin. This is much higher than the estimates we offered. Again, it seems too high to be plausible."