Last year 3,297,352 Wisconsin voters cast ballots in the presidential election-- 1,630,866 for Biden (49.45%) and 1,610,184 for Trump (48.82%). It was pretty close. And of Wisconsin's 72 counties Biden won 14 and Trump won 58, although Biden won the two big population counties, Milwaukee and Dane, while Trump won most of the counties with tiny populations (under 10,000 people) like Florence, Iron, Pepin and Forest.
On Friday, AP ran a piece on recent voter fraud in Wisconsin. Although no one has been charged, 27 cases are being investigated. 27 out of 3,297,352 is statistically and effectively meaningless. 16 of those under investigation registered with their mailing address at a UPS store in La Crosse, rather than their residence as required by law. It's impossible to know if the miscreants were Democrats or Republicans because Wisconsin doesn't register voters by party, but in other states where people have been caught voting twice or breaking election rules, almost every single one has been a Trump voter-- like the Republican psychopath who killed his wife and then voted for Trump twice-- once as himself and again as her.
"The identified potential cases of fraud to date," wrote reporter Scott Bauer, "are in line with suspected voter misconduct in past elections in the battleground state. They are also far below unsubstantiated accusations made by former President Donald Trump and his supporters of widespread fraud and abuse in the election won by more than 20,600 votes by President Joe Biden in the state. Trump attempted to toss out more than 221,000 legally cast ballots in Wisconsin, losing in multiple state and federal courts. Wisconsin Republican lawmakers are pushing more than a dozen bills this year that would make it more difficult to vote absentee in Wisconsin. The measures are making their way through the Legislature and any that pass are expected to be vetoed by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers. The bills are part of a national push by Republicans to change voting laws following Trump’s defeat in November and his bogus claims that there was widespread fraud and abuse."
Democratic state Sen. Jon Erpenbach told Bauer that "Whatever excuse the Republicans have for massive fraud in Wisconsin, it’s just simply not true. It’s all based on 'the big lie.' They need to stop spreading 'the big lie.'"
This morning, CNN politics reporter Harry Enten wrote about the connection between how Trump's Big Lie about the election and led to the failed coup/insurrection. He noted that for some people, the events of 1/6 can be difficult to fathom and that some Republicans don't seem to comprehend them at all. "They have fallen back," wrote Enten, "on the lies that the riots we all saw on television and online that day were not an insurrection by supporters of Donald Trump. Dangerously, the base's reaction to January 6 are part of a larger worldview about the 2020 election and its aftermath, all steeped in mistruths in an effort to protect Trump's legacy. A Reuters/Ipsos poll from late March found that an astounding 55% of Republicans agreed that the January 6 riots were led by left-wing protesters trying to make the former President look bad. Just 30% of Republicans disagreed with this statement."
As long as you weren't watching Fox or Newsmax or OAN, you saw it with your own eyes. Many Republicans believe believe that the domestic terrorists in the video are BLM and AntiFa activists dressed up to look like Trumpists, an absurd claim that has been disproven by the arrested right-wing putschists. And, pointed out Enten, "51% of Republicans believe that the protesters were mostly peaceful and law-abiding. Put it together, a majority of Republicans think that the protesters were mostly peaceful, and a majority think those who rioted at the US Capitol were put up to it by left-wing agitators."
We shouldn't lose sight of how crazily high these stats are. They're not normal, even in our deeply partisan age.
Biden clearly won the election with room to spare. In similar elections outcomes since 2004 (competitive but not too close), only about 10% to 15% of the losing candidate's backers had no confidence that the votes were counted fairly. Following this past election, it's around 50 points higher than that.
The difference between those elections and this one seems pretty obvious and is the same as the linking factor between the reaction to the 2020 election and the events of January 6: Trump.
Most Americans seem to recognize that link. A clear majority, 55%, told Quinnipiac University back in February that the riots wouldn't have happened if Trump had not spent months lying about how the 2020 election was stolen. Not surprisingly, 59% of Republicans think the riots still would have happened without Trump saying anything about the election's legitimacy.
Many Republicans can't believe anything bad about Trump. Most, 68%, said that Trump did everything he could to stop the events of January 6. Just 25% of Americans overall believe that.
[Despite sliding into online irrelevance], Trump still has this almost hypnotic spell over most Republicans. This has led him to not only leading in the 2024 Republican primary polls, but puts him in the strongest polling position of any former President who could run for another term.
And because so many Republicans are willing to believe so many lies that make Trump look good, it's a big reason you should take his polling advantage seriously.
Feeding these lies to Republicans have been bringing in big campaign contribution hauls for the nuts who push the lies the hardest-- Marjorie Taylor Greene, Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz, Mad Cawthorn, Matt Gaetz, Mo Brooks, Paul Gosar, Gym Jordan, Lauren Boebert. And, at least so far, this is no disincentive that might make them reconsider. Most of them are in districts that are deeply red enough so that they're guaranteed reelection without support for independents or being voters (Boebert and possibly Cawthorn being the exceptions.)
One of the Republicans doing that is right-wing fraud Byron Donalds, Astead Herndon >interviewed him for the NY Times:
What did you think of how the 2020 election went in Florida? Did you think it was administered properly, with no evidence of fraud?
It was administered very properly. We had the best election laws in the country. Our secretary of state or local officials follow the law, as you know, as it’s written, to a T, and we were pretty much done by 10 o’clock that night.
Do you believe the false claims by former President Trump that the 2020 election was rigged?
I think what happened is that in several key counties and key states, election law was not followed. That’s clear. It’s crystal clear. You have a federal judge in Michigan that said as much. You have two counties in Wisconsin where the local election officials chose not to follow election laws and cited Covid-19 as the reason. You have a State Supreme Court of Pennsylvania that did not follow election law written by the state legislature there. You had the issues in Arizona, you had the consent decree in Georgia-- that’s clear violations of the Constitution.
Do you think, as former President Trump states, this amounts to widespread fraud that would have changed the outcome of the election?
When you violate election law, and you have other bodies or other positions in our governmental apparatus that do not follow the written law, that leads to problems.
So I just want to make sure I have this straight. You think that those problems happened elsewhere in the country, but not in Florida?
Because in Florida, we followed our law.
...Last question: Do you see the former president’s rhetoric as at least connected to the events that happened on January 6, even if you don’t see them affecting trust in the democratic system overall?
No, I don’t.