There have been minor glitches around the country for the 2022 midterm elections. In some places, machines were broken and had to be reset. In Pennsylvania, they ran out of ballots. They are all things that have happened before. But former Justice Department acting assistant attorney general for national security Mary McCord warned of impending violence.
"Certainly today, this is the culmination of more than two years of disinformation that is fueling various online threats," said McCord. Thus far, she said there hasn't been too much. There have been "some minor mechanical glitch or minor hiccups in the process, that's exploding online as being proof of some sort of fraud in the election process and something that will mean that a result that is not to the liking of certain people in this country will be blamed on a rigged election. So, what I'm worried about, and, again, I think things have gone relatively smoothly in terms of voter safety at polling places, but what I'm worried about is what will come after today when any one of these little glitches becomes the basis for baseless litigation over voter fraud and potential intimidation of the people who are in charge with counting ballots."
She cited what happened in 2020, noting that there were attacks on ballot counting facilities and that this year they've had to post security and ensure there are reinforcements.
"But minor, little things will fuel this bitter narrative of voter fraud that has been rampant for the last two years in which the former president today is doubling down on," McCord continued. "And saying things like, protest, protest, protest in reference to Detroit, which is very troubling, because it harkens back some of his invitations for people to take matters into their own hands. As we know the last time he did that in a big way resulted in the attack on the Capitol on Jan 6th. We certainly don't want to see anything remotely like that, even if it's at the different locations where votes will be tabulated."
She said that the future focus will be on the Capitol and major state capitol buildings, particularly in swing states, over the coming days.
"The ones that have already been the epicenters of -- episodes of voter intimidation, even at ballot drop boxes, et cetera," she predicted. "So, now, like you said, you used the word, that was before Americans had been marinating in the stew of lies, and people are more accepting of these lies over two years. Too many people have accepted these lies. Too many politicians have run on these lies and have not committed to respecting the results of the election. In fact, have said very clearly in some cases that they won't accept the results and they will litigate."
She clarified that she didn't want to make things sound too overblown and that she was hopeful thanks to the early involvement of law enforcement.
"We hope those people will be very steely in their response to this. But we have seen violence before and we need to be prepared for it," she closed.
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