Summary of Does mail-in voting lead to fraud – and does it help Democrats? The facts

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Does mail-in voting lead to fraud – and does it help Democrats? The facts summary

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Mail-in voting is a hot topic as the 2020 US presidential election nears. Due to the pandemic, more Americans may opt to vote by mail than in any other previous election. Anxious about the election result, Donald Trump is claiming that mail-in voting will lead to widespread fraud, and his legal team is hashing out various legal strategies to contest the eligibility of absentee ballots. Will an increase in mail-in voting automatically benefit Trump’s opponent and lead to widespread voter fraud? This informative Q&A by voting rights reporter Sam Levine tries to set the facts straight.

About the Author

Sam Levine is a voting rights reporter for The Guardian  a leading daily newspaper in the UK. 


An unprecedented number of American voters will vote by mail this year. 

While about a quarter of voters voted by mail in the 2016 presidential election, the 2020 election may see up to half of all voters mailing their ballots. Fears of contracting COVID-19 while standing in line at polling stations are one reason, but voters may also have fewer polling facilities open to serve them. Older people, who are more vulnerable to getting sick, often run polling stations. Meanwhile, schools and other public facilities may not want to open up to the public due to the pandemic – though some sports arenas may offer to act as substitute polling sites. A few states, such as Washington, Oregon and Colorado already practice “universal mail-in voting” by sending mail-in ballots to all eligible voters. In most other states, however...

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