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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Obama uses Florida, Gov. Scott to discredit Trump's charges of 'rigged' election

18

October

WASHINGTON - Blasting Donald Trump's complaints about a "rigged" election, President Obama today invoked the state of Florida and Republican Gov. Rick Scott.

"I have never seen in my lifetime or in modern political history any presidential candidate trying to discredit the elections and the election process before votes have even taken place.  It's unprecedented.  It happens to be based on no facts. Every expert, regardless of political party, regardless of ideology -- conservative or liberal -- who has ever examined these issues in a serious way will tell you that instances of significant voter fraud are not to be found; that, keep in mind, elections are run by state and local officials, which means that there are places like Florida, for example, where you've got a Republican governor whose Republican appointees are going to be running and monitoring a whole bunch of these election sites.  The notion that somehow if Mr. Trump loses Florida it's because of those people that you have to watch out for -- that is both irresponsible, and, by the way, it doesn't really show the kind of leadership and toughness that you'd want out of a President.

"If you start whining before the game is even over, if whenever things are going badly for you and you lose you start blaming somebody else, then you don’t have what it takes to be in this job.  Because there are a lot of times when things don’t go our way, or my way.  That’s okay.  You fight through it, you work through it.  You try to accomplish your goals.

"But the larger point that I want to emphasize here is that there is no serious person out there who would suggest somehow that you could even rig America’s elections, in part because they’re so decentralized and the numbers of votes involved.  There’s no evidence that that has happened in the past, or that there are instances in which that will happen this time.

"And so I’d advise Mr. Trump to stop whining and go try to make his case to get votes.  And if he got the most votes, then it would be my expectation of Hillary Clinton to offer a gracious concession speech and pledge to work with him in order to make sure that the American people benefit from an effective government.  And it would be my job to welcome Mr. Trump, regardless of what he’s said about me or my differences with him on my opinions, and escort him over to the Capitol, in which there would be a peaceful transfer of power.

"That’s what Americans do.  That’s why America is already great.  One way of weakening America and making it less great is if you start betraying those basic American traditions that have been bipartisan and have helped to hold together this democracy now for well over two centuries."

[Last modified: Tuesday, October 18, 2016 4:24pm]

    

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