Donald Trump suggested without evidence Friday that the Obama administration was letting illegal immigrants into the country to vote — part of a series of unsubstantiated complaints by the GOP nominee that the election is “rigged” against him and that his backers should monitor polling locations in “certain areas.”
Trump’s allegations were a dramatic escalation of the usual partisan warfare over ballot access issues and came as Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) denied a request by Hillary Clinton’s campaign to extend voter registration because of Hurricane Matthew. The storm caused the extension of voter registration deadlines in South Carolina, while officials in Georgia have urged residents in storm-affected areas to register online instead of going to registration centers.
In Nevada, state Democrats also threatened Friday to file suit if the voter registration deadline is not extended beyond Saturday to comply with a federal law requiring deadlines to fall within the 30 days before an election.
Voting experts say they are increasingly troubled by Trump’s tone amid fresh strain on voting systems nationwide, warning that his comments could undermine trust in an election system renowned as largely efficient and free of corruption.