Donald Trump’s effort to overturn his 2020 election loss to Joe Biden failed, but his loyalists have never stopped trying to turn the US election system into one that would return him to the White House in 2024—fairly or otherwise.
In the last two years, Republicans have sought to remove state officials who wouldn’t manufacture votes and falsely declare him the winner. They changed the way elections are run in response to his conspiracy theories. Most importantly, they’ve nominated people who insist Trump won as candidates for US Congress and governor, and for offices that certify the outcome.
Has it worked?
To answer that question, a team of Bloomberg journalists set out to find which states are most vulnerable to political election interference—and what it means for elections this fall and in 2024, when the White House will once again be at stake. We dug into laws in all 50 states and scrutinized the thousands of election-related bills proposed nationwide since 2020. We consulted election-security experts, voting rights advocates, election lawyers, academics and current and former elections administrators as well as decades of political research to zero in on how elections work.
The bumper-sticker version of what we found: The 2022 vote should be fine. The most far-reaching attempts by Republicans to overhaul election laws have so far stalled as Americans head into November’s midterm elections to decide governors in 36 states and control of the US Congress. So even though it’s a safe bet that at least a handful of candidates will follow Trump’s lead and claim their opponent cheated if they lose, it won’t be any easier than it was two years ago for them to overturn the results.
But the picture two years from now is shaping up to be much darker.
Trump and his loyalists are supporting people who deny the results of the 2020 election for governor in five key states this fall, more than enough to tilt a close 2024 presidential race away from the duly elected winner. Tight races this November in Arizona, Michigan, Nevada and Wisconsin, and a possible Republican win in Pennsylvania, will determine who is in charge of making election decisions in states where the White House is won or lost. In all five of these states, Trump and his backers tried to overturn the results. [Continue reading…]