He would “go right up behind them”

The Times editorial board says Republicans should stop ignoring Trump’s lies about a “rigged” election.

Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, and Paul Ryan, the speaker of the House, are the two most powerful Republicans in the country and should be willing to put the national interest above their own. Both know full well that there is no “rigging,” and yet between them they have managed one tepid response to Mr. Trump’s outrageous accusations: “Our democracy relies on confidence in election results,” Mr. Ryan’s spokeswoman said, “and the speaker is fully confident the states will carry out this election with integrity.”

This is like standing back while an arsonist pours gasoline all over your house, then expressing confidence that the fire department will get there in time.

Mr. Ryan and Mr. McConnell could hardly dishonor themselves more than they already have in this sordid election year, but their refusal to stand up to Mr. Trump’s pernicious lie may be their lowest moment yet.

But Ryan and McConnell aren’t even the worst.

Other high-profile Republicans have amplified Mr. Trump’s charges and further riled up his angry base. On Saturday, Senator Jeff Sessions, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee from Alabama, told a crowd at a Trump rally in New Hampshire that “they are attempting to rig this election.” On Sunday, Rudy Giuliani, the former New York City mayor and now Mr. Trump’s race-baiting surrogate, told CNN that he would be a “moron” to believe that the voting in cities like Chicago and Philadelphia would be fair to Mr. Trump. “I have found very few situations where Republicans cheat,” Mr. Giuliani said. “They don’t control the inner cities the way Democrats do.”

Giuliani is being relentlessly disgusting.

Trump apologists claim that when he says the election is rigged, he is only referring to critical media coverage, but that’s demonstrably false. Either way, some of his supporters have swallowed his lies and are threatening to act as vigilante poll watchers on Election Day. One Trump supporter in Ohio told The Boston Globe that he would look for “Mexicans. Syrians. People who can’t speak American” and that he would “go right up behind them” and “make them a little bit nervous.”

Trump is the candidate of the bullies. That’s his core platform – bullying. Bullying women, bullying foreigners and immigrants, bullying brown people, bullying libbruls – bullying most of the population.

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