President Donald Trump will sign an executive order Thursday creating a commission to examine voter fraud and voter suppression, something that he has repeatedly claimed, without evidence, constitutes a major and ongoing problem in the U.S.
A White House official told the pool of reporters monitoring the president on Thursday that the executive order will be more forward-looking rather than "reviewing alleged voter fraud [and] suppression.”
“The Commission will review policies and practices that enhance or undermine the American people’s confidence in the integrity of Federal elections — including improper registrations, improper voting, fraudulent registrations, fraudulent voting, and voting suppression,” the official told the press pool.
During last year’s presidential campaign, Trump offered repeated claims that the election would be rigged against him and would not commit to accepting the election results, instead insisting on reserving judgement until after votes were cast and the results released. Weeks after he won the election, Trump wrote on Twitter that “in addition to winning the Electoral College in a landslide, I won the popular vote if you deduct the millions of people who voted illegally,” an allegation for which he offered no proof.
And days after he was sworn in as president last January, Trump reiterated his claim to a group of Congressional leaders from both parties, telling them during a White House that he had only lost the popular vote to Democrat Hillary Clinton because of illegally cast votes. White House officials have sought to defend the president’s claim but have struggled to offer a clear defense of it.
The commission will allow Trump to make good on a promise he made via Twitter shortly after his inauguration, to seek “a major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and even, those registered to vote who are dead (and many for a long time). Depending on results, we will strengthen up voting procedures!"