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Mike Lindell baselessly calls DeSantis's win into query – The Washington Put up


For the previous few years, Republicans have largely stood by as numerous figures have sought to lift their profiles within the conservative motion by advancing baseless allegations of voter fraud — from Trump-aligned legal professionals akin to L. Lin Wooden, Sidney Powell and Rudy Giuliani to MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell.

An obvious impediment to the get together taking motion: Such figures have been saying a lot the identical factor as Donald Trump (and a few have been immediately working for him, to advance his stolen-election trigger in public and in court docket). So the GOP merely provided its personal watered-down causes for questioning the 2020 outcomes, whereas sidestepping the precise claims made by Trump and these rising thought leaders.

Now certainly one of them has skilled his “stolen election” claims on a brand new goal — and a Republican, at that: Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

On his present Tuesday, Lindell indicated that he’s going to show his crack group of voter-fraud investigators on DeSantis’s win within the 2022 midterms. The purported cause? The margin of victory was simply too huge — significantly in Miami-Dade County. (The unspoken however extra seemingly cause? DeSantis is a rising risk to Trump.)

Lindell previewed his case on air after initially pausing whereas he acquired some recommendation from his lawyer about what he was about to say. (Lindell is being sued over his false claims about voting machines within the 2020 election.) He went on to repeatedly reference “Dade County” despite the fact that it has been referred to as Miami-Dade County since 1997.

“I don’t consider it,” Lindell stated, of DeSantis’s win there. “So it’s simply going to indicate all people — identical to we all the time let you know about Democrats the place they stole their elections … I’m going to seek out out if Dade County — what occurred there.”

In an interview, Lindell told the Bulwark that “a Republican hasn’t received Dade County like DeSantis did,” calling it a “deviation” and saying he wished to seek out out “if there was issues with the election, issues with the machine or no matter.”

This declare — as is typical of Lindell — has just about nothing behind it.

It’s true that it’s uncommon for a Republican to win Miami-Dade County. However regardless of the county’s blue standing in most up-to-date elections, elections there have swung considerably over the previous quarter-century.

In reality, Republicans have received the county in 4 different statewide races since 1997: the 1998 and 2002 governor’s races, when Jeb Bush received; the 2004 Senate race, when Mel Martinez narrowly carried it; and Sen. Marco Rubio’s (R-Fla.) win alongside DeSantis this 12 months.

Most of these happened about twenty years in the past, in fact. Then the county seemingly shifted towards Democrats, with Republicans taking lower than 40 % there in most top-of-the-ticket races within the 2010s. However Miami-Dade County has all the time been able to large swings and has proved keen to vote for the correct of Republican.

For instance, whilst Bush carried it in 1998, the GOP really misplaced Miami-Dade County within the Senate race that very same day by greater than 56 factors. Bush additionally received it regardless of the GOP having taken simply 38 % there within the earlier presidential election.

Maybe most significantly, Miami-Dade appeared to float again towards the GOP even earlier than DeSantis’s win. Whereas Trump didn’t win the county in 2020, he did take 46 % — the very best displaying for a Republican on the high of the ticket since 2004. Trump additionally shrank his deficit within the county from 29 points in 2016 to just seven points in 2020.

Trump actually went from the worst displaying for a Republican within the county since 1998 to the very best one since 2004 — the identical man, in a span of simply 4 years. And he did so even because the GOP misplaced floor nationwide. This large “deviation” didn’t elevate Lindell’s suspicions.

It stays to be seen how laborious Lindell pushes this rhetoric in opposition to DeSantis, however the effort can be in line with Trump’s halting makes an attempt to go after his would-be usurper because the get together’s chief. DeSantis’s 19-point victory bolstered the case he may make in difficult Trump in 2024 — that he, not like the previous president, is a winner. So it follows that questioning it, irrespective of how baselessly, would serve Trump’s functions.

This is able to additionally imply, in fact, concentrating on the politician who seems just like the GOP’s most formidable candidate in 2024. And the shift within the margins may appear superficially believable to the many individuals who’ve been duped into believing false accusations primarily based on far much less.

If nothing else, maybe this may instill some braveness in sure Republicans to do one thing about this man.

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