As votes continue to be counted across the United States following an inconclusive Election Day, President Donald Trump has unleashed a storm of angry tweets claiming that his Democratic Party opponent Joe Biden is trying to “steal the election.”
Twitter reacted to the multiple presidential tweets and retweets by slapping multiple warnings on his profile, warning that Trump’s statements about “surprise ballot dumps” and electoral fraud were unsubstantiated and misleading.
On Tuesday night, the president issued a misspelled tweet that he quickly removed after misspelling “polls” as “Poles,” as in the Western Slavic nation of Poland.
“We are up BIG, but they are trying to STEAL the Election,” Trump tweeted. “We will never let them do it. Votes cannot be cast after the Poles are closed!”
Trump quickly removed the tweet before posting it again, this time with the proper spelling of “polls.”
On Wednesday morning, the president also took to the social media platform to claim that his lead in “many key states” had “magically disappeared” after the tallying of the count resumed, revealing that Joe Biden had narrowly eked out a lead in both Wisconsin and Michigan.
Trump had prematurely declared victory on Tuesday night when he was leading in the two rust belt states in a White House press conference that was both celebratory but also accused the Democrats of perpetrating “a fraud on the American people” in the extraordinarily close election. The president also claimed victory in Georgia and North Carolina, two states that still have not announced their results.
The president also vowed to go to the Supreme Court to demand that the counting of votes “must stop.”
“Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key states, in almost all instances Democrat run and controlled,” Trump said in the tweet, adding: “Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted.”
Twitter labeled the tweet with a prominent red exclamation point and a disclaimer warning that “some or all of the content shared in this tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process”.
Ten minutes later, Trump continued the tweet-storm by bemoaning mail-in voting, which has exponentially increased amid anxieties over the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The president has repeatedly expressed fears over the possibility of mail-in voting being a vehicle for fraud in the election.
“How come every time they count Mail-In ballot dumps they are so devastating in their percentage and power of destruction?” he said.
While the vote count proceeded, Trump continued to expound on his conspiracy theory over election fraud, tweeting that “they are working hard to make up 500,000 vote advantage in Pennsylvania disappear.”
Trump also confirmed what many analysts had long expected, which is that mail-in votes would take some time to be counted across the country and would likely lean heavily toward Biden.
Critics have long expected Trump to call into question the results of the presidential election, and to declare himself victorious prematurely while the count was still ongoing. In the meantime, Biden has expressed cautious optimism about the outcome of the results, urging his supporters to be patient.
Trump is now trailing his opponent in electoral college votes, with Biden having 237 votes and the incumbent president having 214, according to The New York Times.
As expected, the Trump administration is signalling that it will wage a war of legal attrition over the results, urging supporters to donate money so that it can fight back against any possible Democratic victory.
On Wednesday afternoon, presidential legal counsel Rudy Giuliani tweeted that “massive cheating” was taking place in Pennsylvania, where Trump is clearly ahead. However, the state is still counting absentee and mail-in ballots and isn’t expected to have every vote counted until Friday, at the earliest.
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