To be sure, fraud has happened in some elections. In 2018, the vote was thrown out in North Carolina’s 9th District because of a Republican consultant’s apparent fraud in collecting, or “harvesting,” absentee ballots. But fraud is rare, and the difficulty of carrying it out on a national scale should become obvious when considering that elections are run differently in every state — and in some cases in counties within states. And it probably needs to be said: Making voting easier rather than harder is not fraud.
Candidates don’t have to roll over and take it if shenanigans happen, but there also should be a recognition that elections are run largely by part-time poll workers who are going to make mistakes, especially if they’re trying to operate using new rules put in place to protect voters and poll workers from a deadly virus. Those mistakes could easily become grounds for postelection lawsuits, but anecdotes do not equal widespread fraud.
And given how people who want to harm Americans might be waiting to capitalize, it would be great if leaders were as committed to preventing that harm as they are to winning their races.