As one of the many Trump supporters who believe that the time has come to graciously admit defeat and move on, I read with interest the interview with Boris Epshteyn in last week’s Prime. Mr. Epshteyn’s replies were very much as I expected.
What surprised me, however, were the questions that were asked. I have high regard for Mrs. Sarah Lehmann’s journalistic abilities and enjoy reading her articles. In this case however, she made some surprising assertions.
For instance, she asked, “How do you explain the constant refrain, ‘There’s no evidence of widespread fraud,’ from the media, big tech, and even some Republicans, despite the more than a thousand sworn affidavits to the contrary?”
What she left out was that dozens of Republican Judges, including even some nominated by Trump, who looked into these affidavits, came to the conclusion that there is no evidence of fraud. The reality is that while these affidavits describe GOP poll watchers being treated unfairly, a failure to give poll watchers the access they feel they deserved, and a host of other suspicious-looking activities, they don’t claim actual firsthand accounts of falsifying or illegally cast votes. The same way no fair court would ever convict someone of stealing based solely on eyewitness accounts of the defendant looking suspicious, there is no basis to throw out millions of votes based on allegations of suspicious activities.
Another example is the question asked about the fact that there were no allegations of fraud being made by Democrats against Republicans, only the reverse, something Mrs. Lehmann refers to as a “disparity.” I found this question to be perplexing. For one thing, winners usually don’t complain about the results and certainly don’t seek to undo them. President Trump’s team didn’t claim fraud four years ago either.
Secondly, this is the first election in 60 years in which such claims are being made. The GOP lost elections in 1964, 1976, 1992, 1996, 2008, and 2012, and never claimed fraud.
President Trump is a good friend of Israel and our community, and we owe him a deep debt of gratitude. But that doesn’t mean we need to deny reality or peddle baseless conspiracy theories. The fact that our preferred candidate lost the election is very disappointing, but let’s accept this reality and move on with life.
Mrs. Lehmann replies:
Thank you very much for your well-written letter and your kind words. As the purpose of an interview is to elicit responses from the interviewee and not to debate him, my questions were fashioned to do just that. And, as one of President Trump’s legal advisors, Boris Epshteyn’s answers took an expected turn.
Your dismissal of claims of election fraud and irregularities “based on allegations of suspicious activities” presupposes that all the firsthand accounts had their day in court. Many trials were rejected based on procedural or other grounds, denying an opportunity to present the evidence. This consisted of thousands of affidavits, declarations, and testimony presented in a variety of state venues that identify election irregularities across six key battleground states.
One need not subscribe to “baseless conspiracy theories” to recognize that where there’s smoke surrounding certain Democratic activities, there’s usually fire. Four years of debunked Russia collusion, baseless impeachment attempts and a relentless media manipulation in Democratic favor should make clear the need to verify and trust, not the other way around. So, while the lack of an actual fire might not be admissible evidence in a court of law, it certainly is in the court of opinion. And it deserves an investigation.
As to your query about the “disparity” between allegations of Democratic and Republican election fraud, a history of election fraud in Democratic-controlled inner cities was augmented by the advent of an unprecedented avalanche of mail-in ballots. And unprecedented new election “laws,” like those in Democratic-controlled Pennsylvania, bypassed the legally mandated State Legislature that should have controlled the admissibility& of many of those ballots.
Unlike Democrats, many of whom turn to rioting as a form of political protest, Republicans turn to the courts. While President Trump has a right to pursue legal challenges, it is highly unlikely that he will succeed at this late point in time. In which case, we should anticipate a gracious concession and hopefully a redirection of energies towards ensuring election integrity for the future.