Attorney General Barr won't agree it's illegal to vote twice, as Trump urged, claims ignorance of state laws

William Barr
(Image credit: Screenshot/Twitter/CNN)

President Trump twice on Wednesday urged supporters in North Carolina to vote two times in the presidential election, once by mail and then again in person, ostensibly to test his unsubstantiated claims that mail-in voting will be rife with fraud. "Intentionally voting twice is illegal, and in many states, including North Carolina, it is a felony," The Washington Post notes. Attorney General William Barr either does not know that or he was just being coy in an interview Wednesday evening with CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

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Blitzer read Barr what Trump had said, and Barr suggested Trump was just "trying to make the point that the ability to monitor this system is not good." Blitzer pointed out that if anyone followed Trump's advice, they would be breaking the law, and Barr responded, "I don't know what the law in the particular state says." He added he's not sure if it is illegal to vote twice in any state, then claimed that widespread mail-in voting "is very open to fraud and coercion, is reckless and dangerous, and people are playing with fire."

"Multiple studies have debunked the notion of pervasive voter fraud in general and in the vote-by-mail process," The Associated Press reports. The Post noted that its own analysis of mail-in voting in three states where it is the primary means of casting ballots found 372 possible cases of double voting or other fraud out of 14.6 million ballots mailed in for the 2016 and 2018 elections, a potential fraud rate of 0.0025 percent.

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If you try out Trump's idea in real life, you will either be blocked from voting in person or your mail-in ballot will be "spoiled," Patrick Gannon, spokesman for the North Carolina State Board of Elections, told The New York Times. He suggested that if you are worried about your mail-in ballot, rather than commit felony vote fraud, track its progress on the board's website.

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