As the odds increasingly mount against a Trump presidency, the Republican nominee has resorted to a new campaign tactic—claiming the US electoral system is somehow “rigged” against him. He cites widespread voter fraud (for which there is no evidence), “phony” polling (for which there is no evidence), and a media industry united in their bias against him (if only journalists were that organized).
It’s a talking point that has resonated with followers. A Washington Post poll found that 84% of committed Trump supporters believe the election is legitimately rigged against their candidate. But that sentiment appears to begin and end with Trump’s base.
According to a CNN/ORC International poll released Tuesday (Oct. 25), 66% of Americans believe that ballots will be accurately cast and counted on Nov. 8, up eight percentage points from 2008; and 77% say whoever loses has an obligation to accept the results and concede the race to his or her opponent.
One thing voters seem to agree on, across party lines, is that Trump’s ego is very much in play. Only 35% of Americans believe Trump will accept losing results on election day and concede to Hillary Clinton. Even his supporters aren’t too confident here—while 95% of Clinton supporters believe she’ll concede if she loses, only 56% of Trump supporters could say the same.
Trump’s scare tactics aren’t having the desired effect—at least beyond voters who would probably cry some form of foul anyway, in the event of a Clinton victory. Ironically, it appears one of the candidate’s favorite maxims applies: “Folks, that’s all talk.”