Dear MoveOn member,
Donald Trump just sent out one of the most ominous messages of his entire presidency: tweeting the suggestion that the 2020 election be delayed because of his patently false claims that voting by mail will lead to inaccurate results.1
Let's be clear: Trump does NOT have the power to move Election Day on his own—but today's threat could be a trial balloon to see if he can gain support from his base to claim that the results of the election are invalid, and if that succeeds, it could lead to one of the biggest and most dangerous constitutional crises in the history of our nation.
Mar, it is up to us to protect our democracy and ensure that Trump can't fully embrace his authoritarian fantasies. That's why MoveOn is joining with a coalition to build a rapid-response plan for hundreds of thousands of MoveOn members and our allies to take to the streets if Trump and the GOP make moves to disrupt the election or refuse to accept the results.
Will you chip in $3 a week to help us build out these plans and strengthen our election work to defeat Trump and his cronies on November 3 in a landslide? (MoveOn will bill your weekly donation to your credit card once a month starting today and will contact you shortly after the election to see if you want to modify or cancel your weekly donation.)
Trump sent his tweet just 16 minutes after the Department of Labor released an economic report showing that the GDP has fallen a record-breaking 32.9% in 2020, with new unemployment claims reaching their highest peak since 1982.2
These numbers, caused by Trump and the GOP's disastrous handling of the coronavirus pandemic, are catastrophic for Trump—and new poll numbers show that he is dragging vulnerable Republicans, especially in the Senate, down with him.
He knows that these numbers and his complete failure to confront the pandemic, the rising death toll, the economic devastation, and the need to provide real relief make it more likely that he will lose in November. He appears desperate to save himself.
But while blustering about delaying the election may be preposterous, Trump's active attempts to attack the Postal Service and Mitch McConnell's refusal to pass legislation to safeguard voting during the pandemic could have very real consequences this fall.
Trump has installed a lackey, Louis DeJoy, as the new postmaster general, and he is working to destroy the post office from within. A leaked memo shows that at a time when the postal service is already strapped because of the coronavirus, DeJoy is cancelling overtime in ways that will slow down mail delivery.3 Additionally, and terrifyingly, USPS has released guidelines that say voters must request mail-in ballots at least two weeks before Election Day or they will not be returned in time to be counted.4 DeJoy claims these are efforts to improve the post office, but they could cause millions of votes to be invalidated—and we won't let it happen.
We need your help to build up our election protection campaign and fight back against Trump's latest dictatorial threats. Will you chip in $3 a week? (MoveOn will bill your weekly donation to your credit card once a month starting today and will contact you shortly after the election to see if you want to modify or cancel your weekly donation.)
In addition to working with our partners to prepare a massive public response if Trump moves to invalidate the election, we are also:
- Creating powerful videos highlighting Trump's authoritarianism and demanding that voters reject him at the ballot box. MoveOn's Creative Lab is hard at work on videos and digital ads that will be seen by the most important voters in battleground states to show them just how dangerous Trump can be and why it is so important to defeat him and his supporters in Congress in November.
- Demanding Republicans publicly reject Trump's calls to delay the election. Republicans have been mostly silent about Trump's threats to delay the election or reject the results, and we must hold them accountable.
- Commissioning battleground-state polls that show just how badly Trump and Republican Senate candidates are faring across the country. We released our first set of polls earlier this week showing just how much Trump's use of secret police in Portland is hurting his poll numbers, and with your help we can expand our polls to additional states.5
- Pushing Congress to pass legislation providing funding to expand voting by mail. States across the country need federal help to build the infrastructure needed to support mass vote-by-mail efforts, which are critical to allow voters to safely cast a ballot during the pandemic. Mitch McConnell and the GOP have refused to move legislation on this, and we are working hard to demand that they stop obstructing and work to protect our election and save the post office from bankruptcy.
Don't for one moment think that Trump wouldn't actually delay the election if he could, or that he won't do whatever he can—legal or not—to maintain his power. It's up to us to stop him.
Will you chip in $3 a week? (MoveOn will bill your weekly donation to your credit card once a month starting today and will contact you shortly after the election to see if you want to modify or cancel your weekly donation.)
Thanks for all you do.
–David, Elsie, Kenia, Julia, and the rest of the team
1. "Donald Trump suggests delay to 2020 US presidential election," BBC, July 30, 2020
2. "Economy in reverse: Initial jobless claims rise for second week, GDP falls by record 33 percent," NBC News, July 30, 2020
3. "Trump-backed postmaster general plans to slow mail delivery," Fortune, July 24, 2020
4. "The US Postal Service is urging voters to request their November mail-in ballots at least 15 days before the election," Business Insider, July 28, 2020
5. "Poll: Voters in Maine, other battleground states disapprove of Trump's deployment of federal agents," Maine Beacon, July 28, 2020
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