President Donald Trump signed an executive order aimed at social media platforms on Thursday in the Oval Office. During the signing, he made remarks about mail-in elections, claiming that children will take the ballots from mailboxes and pass them around, committing election fraud.
"In the Oval Office, President Trump says kids will raid mailboxes in California and hand out the ballots. 'You don't think they rip them out of mailboxes?'' tweeted CNN White House correspondent Kaitlan Collins.
The tweet received more than 1,800 "likes" in about half an hour, and over 470 Twitter users retweeted it. Over 1,000 accounts also left a comment about the president's statement.
"No. That doesn't happen. He's a liar, and he made it up. He knows if everyone votes, he loses," replied journalist Scott Dworkin.
Still, others questioned what type of proof that the president had that children in the Golden State have stolen or would steal ballots out of mailboxes. At least one person who replied noted that the state of California sends out several texts regarding mail-in ballots.
"CA mail-in voter here. I received a text when I updated my registration, when my ballot left the Registrar's office, when it hit my mailbox, when it left my post office, when it was received by the Registrar's office and when it was counted. SIX texts for one ballot. He's LYING," explained one Twitter user who claimed to be a registered voter in California.Multiple other Twitter users who said they are from California also replied to say that the children of the state do not make a habit of raiding the mail for election ballots.
Also, during the signing of his new executive order, the president said that he wanted new legislation for Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Attorney General William Barr, who also attended the Oval Office signing, noted that Section 230 of the act had been stretched well beyond its original intention, CNBC reported. Any changes would have to occur via Congress, which means that Trump's order is limited in nature.
The executive order came two days after Twitter added a fact check to two of the president's tweets regarding mail-in ballots leading a rigged election this year. Many states have pushed for expanded voting by mail amid the coronavirus pandemic to help protect public safety. As the crisis unfolded, the president and others in his administration have spoken out and tweeted against allowing such an expansion, even though at least five U.S. states conduct their entire elections via mail.