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Senate Judiciary Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) claimed without evidence on Monday night that there might “potentially” be evidence that illegal ballot harvesting took place in Pennsylvania nursing homes.
“I’ve got more information. We’re now finding potentially that 25,000 nursing home residents in different nursing homes requested mail-in ballots at the exact same time,” Graham claimed during an interview on Fox News. “You can’t ballot harvest in Pennsylvania. What are the odds that 25,000 people in different locations of the same age group requested at the same time a ballot? Somebody is up to no good in these nursing homes.”
“We owe it to those who voted for President Trump and the country at large to test the system. If we don’t deal with voting by mail in 2020, we’ll never win the White House again,” he said. “The biggest issue, the biggest difference between 2016 and 2020 is the mass use of voting by mail. It is the wild, wild West at post offices and there are no rules. And if we don’t come up with some rules pretty soon, we’re going to get killed in perpetuity in presidential campaigns.”
“And I worry about Georgia, I worry about the two Senate races in Georgia,” Graham said. “Why do we want to run down every lead and count every vote? We got two elections in Georgia that will decided the fate of the nation.”
Lindsey Graham: "I’ve got more information. We're now finding potentially that 25,000 nursing home residents in different nursing homes requested mail-in ballots at the exact same time. … Somebody is up to no good in these nursing homes" pic.twitter.com/IUBrnHCR7g
— Daniel Chaitin (@danielchaitin7) November 10, 2020
Graham’s comment comes as there have been numerous outright false or misleading claims made on social media and by public officials about the results of the 2020 election.
On Monday afternoon, Attorney General William Barr directed U.S. attorneys to pursue “substantial allegations” of voting irregularities as long as the allegations were not “specious, speculative, fanciful or far-fetched.”
“While most allegations of purported election misconduct are of such a scale that they would not impact the outcome of an election and, thus, investigation can appropriately be deferred, that is not always the case,” Barr said. “Furthermore, any concerns that overt actions taken by the Department could inadvertently impact an election are greatly minimized, if they exist al all, once voting has concluded, even if election certification has not yet been completed.”
“Given this, and given that voting in our current elections has now concluded, I authorize you to pursue substantial allegations of voting and vote tabulation irregularities prior to the certification of elections in your jurisdictions in certain cases, as I have already done in specific instances. Such inquiries and reviews may be conducted if there are clear and apparently-credible allegations of irregularities that, if true, could potentially impact the outcome of a federal election in an individual State,” he continued.
“Any investigation of claims of irregularities that, if true, would clearly not impact the outcome of a federal election in an individual State should normally be deferred until after the election certification process is completed. While U.S. Attorneys maintain their inherent authority to conduct inquiries and investigations as they deem appropriate, it will likely be prudent to commence any election-related matters as a preliminary inquiry, so as to assess whether available evidence warrants further investigative steps.”
“Nothing here should be taken as any indication that the Department has concluded that voting irregularities have impacted the outcome of any election,” Barr added. “Rather, I provide this authority and guidance to emphasize the need to timely and appropriately address allegations of voting irregularities so that all of the American people, regardless of their preferred candidate or party, can have full confidence in the results of our elections. The American people and the leaders they freely elect deserve nothing less.”