A Sunday report from Axios claims that top lawmakers on the Senate Intelligence Committee fear that Donald Trump could fuel a constitutional crisis in the days following the 2020 presidential election.
“Networks of disinformation, both foreign and domestic, will have a long runway to undermine the integrity of our elections,” the report read. “Those aims could potentially be boosted if President Trump joins in on questioning the credibility of the system.”
Independent Sen. Angus King warned that countries like Iran and Russia could fuel the crisis by raising doubt over purported election fraud — as Trump has continued to do in the weeks leading up to the election. King claimed that the only way to avoid a possible constitutional crisis is to ensure that the winner achieves a landslide victory.
Although Axios noted few Republicans were willing to go on record with their worries about Trump stoking a crisis, many allegedly acknowledged them in private.
“What do you do when the leader of your party is the person providing the fuel that could conceivably be used by foreign actors?” a GOP committee aide allegedly said.
In response to such worries, the Trump administration suggested that the White House has greater control over possible disinformation than its predecessors.
“Election security has received more focus under President Trump than under any Administration before him,” a senior administration official reportedly said.
Democratic Sen. Mark Warner, the party’s ranking member on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said Americans could avoid falling into behavior that fuels a constitutional crisis by being “smart,” voting with “confidence,” and not overreacting to questionable online information.
“We have a lot of smart people across both the federal and state governments working to combat misinformation; let them do their job.”
Republican Marco Rubio, who is the acting Chair of the committee, echoed Warner and said Americans should be cautious of spreading or believing sensational and unverified claims related to the electoral process.
Previous Axios reporting suggested that Trump plans to declare premature victory if he secures an early lead in the election. The comments have fueled worries that the head of state will not leave office quietly in the case of an electoral loss, which is still a significant possibility even if he gains an early lead in states like Pennsylvania.
As The Inquisitr reported, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden pushed back on the president’s purported plan and said that the incumbent would not be able to steal the election.