• The postmaster general has agreed to put off changes that would undermine the postal service's ability to deliver a deluge of mailed in ballots
  • Medical experts have said social justice protests apparently have not led to a spike in coronavirus cases
  • Trump has requested an absentee ballot for Florida

President Trump ramped up the drum beat against mail-in voting Wednesday, saying if you can protest in person “you can vote in person.”

The all-caps tweet was just latest in his near-constant railing against vote by mail, which he has said, without evidence, would lead to widespread fraud.

The reference was apparently to social justice protests, some of them violent, that have swept the nation. Medical experts have said the protests apparently have not led to a spike in coronavirus cases, but the protests were outdoors, and voting takes place indoors at close quarters, often accompanied by long waits.

Trump, who himself has requested an absentee ballot to vote in Florida, admitted earlier this week he was withholding emergency aid to the post office to hobble the agency’s ability to handle what is expected to be a surge in mail-in voting for the November election.

Louis DeJoy, the newly installed postmaster general, had planned to impose major cuts on the postal service to put it on a better financial footing, but, amid sharp criticism from Democrats and voting rights advocates, said Tuesday he would suspend any changes until after the election.

Election officials around the country have been installing drop-off ballot boxes around the country to get around any possible post office tie-ups.

“Donald Trump continues to undermine the legitimacy of mail-in absentee ballots by attacking the U.S. Postal Service,” Demcratic New York state Sen. Brad Hoylman told the Associated Press. “New York can hit back on this anti-democratic fearmongering by establishing absentee ballot drop boxes across the state to help ensure the integrity of these ballots.”

A voter survey by the Democracy Fund + UCLA Nationscape project indicated Democratic voters are more likely to vote by mail than Republican voters, meaning action that inhibits the post office’s ability to do its job would favor Trump’s reelection effort. The Democracy Fund survey indicated 48% of voters likely to support Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden plan to vote by mail compared to 23% of Trump supporters.

Trump has been trying to undermine the validity of an election conducted mostly by mail, indicating in a recent interview he might not accept the results even though research indicates there has been virtually no fraud in the states that have been conducting all-mail elections for years. Observers fear supporters of whatever candidate is ahead on election night might reject the result if the leader is actually the loser once all mailed-in ballots are counted.

Trump has accused states of mailing ballots to every registered voter without verifying whether they’ve moved or died but the National Conference of State Legislatures says that’s a good thing.

“The act of sending out absentee/mailed ballots also allows election officials to ensure they have up-to-date addresses for voters, and states that send out more absentee/mailed ballots have seen an added benefit of ‘cleaner’ voter lists,” NCSL reports.

NCSL notes all states allow absentee voting for certain voters and two-thirds of states now allow any voter to request a mail-in ballot as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Only a handful of states plan to mail ballots to every voter whether a request is made or not.