(UPI) — Donald Trump on Wednesday said he will order a “major investigation” into voter fraud after making unsubstantiated allegations about millions of illegals votes being cast in the presidential election.
“I will be asking for a major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and … even, those registered to vote who are dead (and many for a long time). Depending on results, we will strengthen up voting procedures!” Trump tweeted.
On Monday, Trump said up to “5 million illegals” voted in the election, though he offered no evidence or attribution to back up his comment. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, on Tuesday, said Trump “does believe that” millions of illegal votes were cast in the Nov. 8 election, saying the president based his belief on “studies and information” he received.
The Washington Post reported it could find four instances of attempted voter fraud after conducting an analysis of the 2016 election. Two Trump voters in Iowa and Texas attempted to vote twice but were caught; a voter in Illinois attempted to vote for her dead husband; while a Florida poll worker was caught filling in a vote for a mayoral election on an absentee ballot. Three other instances were under investigation.
To defend Trump, Spicer cited a 2012 study by the Pew Center on the States that said it found inaccurate voter registrations, deceased voters whose information was still on voter rolls and people who registered in more than one state, possibly because they moved without telling their previous state. The study, though, said it found evidence of voter fraud
“We found millions of out-of-date registration records due to people moving or dying, but found no evidence that voter fraud resulted,” David Becker, the primary author of the Pew report, who works for the The Center for Election Innovation & Research, wrote on Twitter in November when Trump first made the allegations.
In a court filing opposing a recount petition led by Green Party candidate Jill Stein, Trump’s lawyer and campaign said that “All available evidence suggests that the 2016 general election was not tainted by fraud or mistake.”
Though Trump won the presidency with 304 electoral college votes, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by nearly 3 million votes.