- The Washington Times - Monday, April 6, 2020

The head of the Republican National Committee accused Democrats Monday of trying to exploit the coronavirus “pandemic for political gain,” saying their calls to expand voting through mail-in options opens the process up to fraud that would undermine the integrity of the 2020 election.

RNC Chair Ronna McDaniel wrote in a Fox News op-ed that the calls from Democrats — including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, the likely 2020 Democratic presidential nominee — would “vastly expand opportunities for fraud and weaken confidence in our elections, but all Washington Democrats see is a potential benefit for their party.”

“The Democrats’ all-mail ballots proposal is a ruse to legalize ballot harvesting nationwide,” she wrote. “Any person would be allowed to return an unlimited number of absentee ballots for voters, opening the door for political operatives to deliver ballots in bulk.”

“They could even be paid as long as he or she is not paid based on the number of ballots returned,” Ms. McDaniel said.

Voting rights activists, meanwhile, have said a silver-lining to the coronavirus outbreak has been the renewed focus on access to voting, including through expanding absentee ballot access, allowing voters to avoid exposing themselves to the virus at the polls.

Mrs. Pelosi, California Democrat, has been seeking more money to send absentee ballots to registered voters.

Mr. Biden has said that some states should look at all-mail ballots.

Ms. McDaniel, though, said it is a recipe for disaster, arguing that the voting lists in states are not up to date and that absentee ballots could be sent out to be who should not be eligible to vote.

“The Republican Party will always defend free and fair elections, especially in times like these,” she said. “That is why we will continue to fight and win against attempts by Democrats to use the pandemic as an excuse to circumvent election integrity.”

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