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Another door slammed shut Friday on the ceaseless and fraudulent campaign by Donald Trump to claim fraud about the 2020 election. The fact that the door closed will not stop Trump from continuing to make his baseless claims about last year’s vote. It should but probably won’t chasten Republican leaders who have refused to fully face up to the consequences of what Trump is doing.
The consequences are the threat to future elections. The consequences are the danger that future close elections will be subjected to similar false claims that inspire more doubts about the integrity of the vote and more disputed outcomes. The consequences are the distinct risk that partisanship will be routinely injected into the counting of votes. The idea that it can’t happen here should be tossed aside if Trump and his acolytes maintain their current course, which they will.
The door that closed Friday was the biggest one out there, the convoluted and contentious review of the vote in Arizona’s Maricopa County, home to Phoenix. The review, described by some as an audit, was ordered by the Republican-controlled state Senate and handed to a firm known as Cyber Ninjas, which had no real experience with election reviews.