Democrats and the media are professing outrage that Republican Donald Trump has raised the possibility that the election may be “rigged.” But in August, as he surged in the polls, they warned that Russia was rigging the election in Trump’s favor.
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, for one, tried to have the FBI investigate, as the New York Times reported in late August:
In a letter to the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey Jr., Mr. Reid wrote that the threat of Russian interference “is more extensive than is widely known and may include the intent to falsify official election results.” Recent classified briefings from senior intelligence officials, Mr. Reid said in an interview, have left him fearful that President Vladimir V. Putin’s “goal is tampering with this election.”
Washington Post columnist Anne Applebaum floated a similar theory in early September:
On or before Election Day, Russian hackers will seek to break into the U.S. voting system. We certainly know that this is possible: Hackers have already targeted voter registration systems in Illinois and Arizona, according to The Post, and the FBI has informed Arizona officials that it suspects Russian hacking teams. Possible breaches are being investigated in several other states, and it’s not hard to imagine that many are vulnerable. The U.S. election system is decentralized and in some places frankly amateurish, as we learned in Florida in 2000.
As Breitbart News noted at the time, the Democrats and the media were preparing “rigging” theories as “a Plan B in case Trump actually wins.”
There was no outrage at those predictions, just as there is no outrage from Democrats or the media when Hillary Clinton repeats the claim that Trump is inviting Russia to interfere in the election and to commit “espionage” against his own country.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.