Despite fairly substantial evidence to the contrary, Donald Trump has insisted throughout the latter portion of his campaign that voter fraud is a large-scale problem in presidential elections. With his warnings, Trump has seemed to be preparing his response to a possible election loss, promoting the idea that if he loses, it was the fault of Democratic voters who succeeded in committing voter fraud. But in a gloriously ironic (and bizarre) piece of news, a Texas Trump supporter was arrested for voter fraud on Tuesday night after attempting to vote twice.
According to local southern Texas ABC affiliate KTRK, 62-year-old Phillip Cook was arrested at Great Oaks Baptist Church, a polling place in Richmond, Texas, for attempted fraud. But Cook claimed he wasn't actually trying to commit fraud. According to a tweet from the County Sheriff's Office in Ford Bend, Texas, where the voter was arrested, he claimed he was actually working for Trump and attempted to vote twice just to "test the system." That's right — voters may be attempting voter fraud, but contrary to Trump's vision, they're doing it to support the Republican candidate and back up his claims that the system can be rigged.
County election officials say that Cook voted early last week and returned to the polling site to attempt to vote again on Tuesday. While poll workers originally thought he might have returned to vote by accident or that there might have been a mistake on the roll, when Cook was confronted, he admitted was trying to "test the system."
In an effort to combat voter fraud, which he perceives as a broad issue, Trump has encouraged his supporters to monitor polling places in order to minimize potential fraudulent voting. These poll watchers, intended to counter what Trump calls the "rigged" nature of the democratic system, are especially present at polling places where likely Clinton voters make up a significant portion of the local demographic. Some are using intimidation tactics to discriminate Latino and black voters.
Cook is not the first person to be arrested for attempting to vote twice — and his predecessor isn't a Democrat either: a woman arrested for fraud in Iowa tried to cast her ballot for Trump twice. Seems like Trump's energies to stop voter fraud might be better spent directed at his own voters.