Imagine that the White House chief of staff wrote a secret memo, at the behest of the president of the United States, to the Treasury secretary and the director of the Office of Management and Budget. In the carefully hidden memo, the chief of staff directs the two to secretly and illegally cut off all federal funding to two key swing states, both led by Democratic governors, with the goal of rigging turnout in favor of the president’s party in the 2020 election.
Now imagine that the memo leaked to The Wall Street Journal, which splashed the story across its front page. The other major papers would quickly follow. Cable news would cover it wall to wall. There would be congressional investigations.
Now imagine that instead of conducting all this skulduggery in private, the president just openly tweeted it out. Actually, you don’t have to imagine it. You can just surf over to Donald Trump’s Twitter feed this morning:
Breaking: Michigan sends absentee ballots to 7.7 million people ahead of Primaries and the General Election. This was done illegally and without authorization by a rogue Secretary of State. I will ask to hold up funding to Michigan if they want to go down this Voter Fraud path!..— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2020
State of Nevada “thinks” that they can send out illegal vote by mail ballots, creating a great Voter Fraud scenario for the State and the U.S. They can’t! If they do, “I think” I can hold up funds to the State. Sorry, but you must not cheat in elections. @RussVought45 @USTreasury— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 20, 2020
Here we have two cases of Trump tweeting threats to states that have sought to expand access to voting by mail as a response to the pandemic sweeping the nation, which has already killed nearly 100,000 Americans (you know, the one Trump has repeatedly declared victory over). And for good measure, he’s tagged Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, OMB Director Russ Vought, and the Treasury Department.