A group of elderly Hollywood stars, including 98-year-old Carl Reiner, is urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to support vote by mail, saying that it will allow senior citizens to vote without endangering their lives during the coronavirus outbreak. The celebrities made their appeal in a video from Defending Democracy Together, a Never-Trump Republican organization co-founded by Bill Kristol.
“Although we’re dying to vote, we’d much rather just vote and not die,” Reiner, 98, says in the video, which features appearances by George Takei, Rita Moreno, and Harry Belafonte– all of whom are over 80.
This is by far the most important message to date that I have ever been involved in & at 98 yrs old that's saying something… call Mitch McConnell @ (202) 224-2541 and tell him: VOTE BY MAIL and support https://t.co/ihU6oi9RgN Please WATCH the :57 sec video & re re re retweet! pic.twitter.com/9X2JJ8nyUr
— carl reiner (@carlreiner) May 16, 2020
“This November, for many of us, it won’ be safe to go to the polls,” Reiner says. “I’m 98 and 2 months old. I don’t want to have to choose between my right to vote …”
“… and my desire to live,” Moreno, 88, adds.
A voice in the video urges viewers to put pressure on Sen. McConnell (R-KY): “Congress needs to give states resources to expand absentee voting during the pandemic. Call Mitch McConnell and tell him older Americans shouldn’t have to risk their health to vote.”
Defending Democracy Together is a Republican activist group that opposes President Donald Trump and his agenda. It has received significant funding from eBay billionaire Pierre Omidyar, a major Democrat donor who has repeatedly denounced President Trump on social media.
Bill Kristol, the former editor of The Weekly Standard, co-founded the group and serves as a director alongside fellow Never Trumpers Mona Charen, Linda Chavez, Christine Todd Whitman, and others.
The video has received support from actress Jamie Lee Curtis, who said vote by mail will allow people “to vote and stay safe.”
— Jamie Lee Curtis (@jamieleecurtis) May 17, 2020
President Donald Trump has repeatedly voiced his objection to vote by mail, saying that it facilitates voter fraud. Ballots can be stolen, sold, forged, or lost. In some cases, illegal aliens receive mail-in ballots because they were automatically registered through their drivers licenses.
The push for vote by mail has also raised concerns about ballot harvesting, which is illegal in some states. Ballot harvesting empowers political operatives to collect and deliver mail-in ballots.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has ordered vote-by-mail in California for November’s election, sending some 21 million ballots to individuals in the state.