Evers, Walz, 10 other Democratic governors vow all votes will count
LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Twelve Democratic governors, including Tony Evers of Wisconsin and Tim Walz of Minnesota, issued a joint statement vowing that every ballot will be counted in the election after President Donald Trump sowed distrust during the first presidential debate.
Trump claimed without evidence during his first debate with Democratic candidate Joe Biden Tuesday night that mail voting is fraught with fraud, and he refused to say whether he would accept the results.
Trump also called on his supporters to scrutinize voting procedures at the polls, which critics said could escalate easily into voter intimidation.
Without mentioning Trump by name, the governors noted his refusal last week to commit to a peaceful transition of power.
Efforts to toss ballots or refuse a peaceful transfer of power “are nothing less than an assault on democracy,” the governors’ statement said.
“There is absolutely no excuse for promoting the intimidation or harassment of voters,” they wrote. “These are all blatant attempts to deny our constituents the right to have their voices heard, as guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution, and to know the will of the people will be carried out.”
The governors said all valid ballots cast in accordance with state and local laws must be counted and if Trump loses, “he must leave office — period.”
Elections are not “an exercise in controlling power,” they wrote, adding that disenfranchising voters “strikes at the very heart” of democracy.
“We call on elected leaders at all levels, from both parties, to speak out loudly against such efforts in the weeks ahead,” they said.
Signing the statement besides Evers and Walz were the chief executives of California, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Michigan, Oregon, Virginia and Washington.
The Associated Press left a message with the Trump campaign seeking comment.
COPYRIGHT 2020 BY WKBT/News8000.com. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. THIS MATERIAL MAY NOT BE PUBLISHED, BROADCAST, REWRITTEN OR REDISTRIBUTED.