Hillary Clinton appeared as a guest on Monday’s episode of “The Daily Show” where host Trevor Noah asked the former secretary of state about the potential changing of powers at the White House after November's election.
The former Democratic presidential nominee appeared virtually for an interview on what Noah has been calling “The Daily Social Distancing Show” amid the coronavirus pandemic. Their friendly interview quickly turned to the topic of voter suppression, with Clinton taking a jab at Republican leaders, alleging they’re trying to stifle votes from people they believe will vote blue in November.
“Republicans have two prongs to their strategy to try to win,” she explained. “The first is to try to prevent as many people who they think won’t vote for them from voting. So make the lines really long where young people vote or African-Americans vote or Hispanics vote. Try to make vote-by-mail as difficult as possible. Claim it’s fraudulent when indeed it’s not. In fact, that’s how Donald Trump votes and everybody who knows about vote-by-mail understands that.”
With that, Noah asked if she believes President Trump, who has repeatedly said in the past that voter fraud is an issue with voting by mail, will attempt to use the vast number of Americans likely to vote by mail in November due to the COVID-19 pandemic as an excuse to delegitimize the election and refuse to yield power in the event he loses.
“I think it is a fair point to raise as to whether or not, if he loses, he’s going to go quietly or not. We have to be ready for that,” she cautioned. “But there have been so many academic studies and other analyses that point out that it’s just an inaccurate, fraudulent claim. There isn’t that problem.”
Clinton added: “All the games that are played and all the photo IDs and any kind of restriction that can be imposed to try to keep the vote down in places that aren’t going to vote for Republicans, that’s the real danger to the integrity of our election. That combined with misinformation and disinformation and all the online shenanigans that we saw in 2016.”
Clinton concluded her thoughts on voter suppression and Trump potentially refusing to yield power by saying that, above all, she simply wants a fair and honest election.
“I want a fair election. If people get to vote and they, for whatever reason, vote for Donald Trump, OK. We’ll accept it. Not happily,” she said with a laugh. “But I don’t think that’s what will happen because I think the more people that can get to the poles, whether by mail or in person, and get their votes counted, then we’re going to have the kind of election we should have and then it’ll be a win both in the popular vote and in the electoral college.”
Later in the interview, Clinton pulled no punches when talking about Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, making it clear that she blames his “lack of leadership” for the U.S. having some of the highest infection rates.
“You have to start with President Trump’s total hostility toward science, evidence, facts, logic, reason. He is a showman. He is a reality TV star. He likes to try to bend reality to suit his own preferences. And he clearly started hearing about this back in January through intelligence briefings that he either read or didn’t read,” she said. “But even before that he had disbanded the unit within the National Security Council that would try to get ahead of and follow the development of pandemics abroad. He had really made it clear that he was more interested in the optics than the facts when the virus first hit and he kept saying, ‘We have 15 cases, it’ll be over soon.’”
She concluded: “So, you’ve got to begin and end with his total lack of leadership. His indifference toward what this virus has cost us, not only in lives but in jobs and livelihoods. Now of course he doesn’t want to hear from our leading infectious disease experts like Dr. Fauci. He doesn’t want to hold even the sham of the meetings he used to hold to try and talk about it. He’s hoping that it either goes away or leaves our attention span so that he can get back to pretending to be president.”