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Voting fraud, according to study after study, is rare. Mail-in ballots are, with a few exceptions, a safe way to vote.
But millions of Americans have come to believe something radically different: They think the Nov. 3 election could very well end up being stolen. That the outcome — especially if it relies on counting the votes that come in later than in a normal election year — might well be illegitimate.
Where would they get such an idea?
Conventional wisdom might say it comes from false stories and memes spread on social media, originating from foreign troublemakers trying to influence the election results — most likely in favor of President Trump, who is behind in public opinion polls and stands to benefit most from doubt sown about the reliability of mail-in ballots.