• Trump said New York's mail-in primary was "a total mess" and a nationwide election would be even worse
  • Trump has been trying to undermine the credibility of a mail-in election for months despite evidence states that have been conducting them for years have faced no major problems
  • Recent polls indicate Trump is losing to Joe Biden in major battleground states by margins as high as 11%

President Trump Thursday called for a delay in the general election, set for Nov. 3, until danger from the coronavirus has passed and "people can properly, securely and safely vote."

In a series of tweets, Trump said widespread mail-in balloting would produce fraudulent results.

Any change in the election date would be up to Congress, which set a nationwide date for the general election in 1845, setting the date as the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. It was unlikely Democrats would go along with Trump’s suggestion.

“With Universal mail-in voting [not absentee voting, which is good], 2020 will be the most inaccurate & fraudulent election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the election until people can properly, securely and safely vote?” Trump tweeted

He called mail-in voting a “disaster,” citing a CBS News story in which the reporter found of 100 simulated ballots mailed over a two-week period, three never arrived.

Trump has been railing against widespread vote-by-mail, saying it would lead to widespread fraud and render the result of the election invalid despite evidence from states that conduct their elections by mail that the system works.

“New York Mail-In voting is in a disastrous state of condition. Votes from many weeks ago are missing – a total mess. They have no idea what is going on. Rigged election. I told you so. Same thing would happen, but on massive scale, with USA,” Trump tweeted.

Trump campaign national press secretary Hogan Gidley said the president is just raising because of the "chaos" Democrats have created by their promotion of mail-in voting.

“They are using coronavirus as their means to try to institute universal mail-in voting, which means sending every registered voter a ballot whether they asked for one or not. Voter rolls are notoriously full of bad addresses for people who have moved, are noncitizens, or are even deceased. Universal mail-in voting invites chaos and severe delays in results, as proven by the New York Congressional primary where we still don’t know who won after more than a month,” he said in a statement emailed to International Business Times.

In a recent interview, on Fox News, Trump declined to say he would abide by the results of the general election if he loses, but it was unclear whether there was any mechanism for him to contest the result.

In testimony this week before a House committee, Attorney General William Barr said widespread mail-in voting would increases the chances of fraud despite evidence in five states that conduct all-mail elections of no major problems.

Recent polls indicate presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is leading Trump by as much as 11% in battleground states and Trump’s disapproval rating is hovering near 60%, mainly over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

A response from the Biden campaign was not immediately provided to IBTimes.

(Updated at 10:39 a.m.)