Republican pollster Frank Luntz warned of post-election chaos if MAGA candidates refuse to accept losing results.
The veteran political consultant sounded genuinely spooked Friday on MSNBC's "Morning Joe," where he said that voters have lost faith in democracy because the candidates they backed didn't always do what they promised, and he said similar dynamics were playing out in other countries.
"Well, the problem is that they seem to be one thing as to running for office, then they get elected and they become part of the system," Luntz said. "That's when the frustration that's the public has -- get things done. They are angry, the partisanship, the rancor and anger at the conditions. They don't think the elected officials -- Israel is going through the same thing, we've seen the same thing in Germany and France. Frankly, it's a challenge to democracies everywhere, thanks to social media, thanks to the pressures of day-to-day service."
"Governments are not performing in the way that public wants, and I'm genuinely afraid in this country that we're about 2 1/2 weeks away from a group of candidates simply not accepting the results," Luntz added, "and this is my warning to you all and to the viewers watching at home. We could have a situation of 2020 all over again and all over the country if governors, senators, secretaries of state choose not to accept their loss and continue to fight back. It's not the just Republicans, we're in trouble here. The previous segment [on Abraham Lincoln] shows we've been through this before. I don't want to get to a civil war, I want a democracy that survived and thrives."
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Host Joe Scarborough pushed back on Luntz's attempts to lay equal blame for this on Democrats, saying the anti-democracy sentiment was almost entirely a Republican phenomenon stoked by Donald Trump.
"Frank, we just played a clip from one of the focus groups," Scarborough said. "Every Trump voter she talked to believes that [Joe] Biden is not the rightful president, believes the lies that they've been told repeatedly, [who] think Jan. 6 is much to do about nothing. You have candidates that are running for governor, they are election deniers, they are going to be leaders in the House. They say they won't accept the results."
"I mean, yes, I understand there have been Democrats here and there, a small handful, that have challenged election results," Scarborough added, "but here in 2022, this is coming from the Republican Party, and it seems to be a clear and present danger to American democracy."
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