In the face of increasing signs that President Donald Trump will try to prematurely declare victory on Election Night next Tuesday—even before millions of valid mail-in and absentee ballots are counted—momentum is building for a massive grassroots counter-offensive across the country to make sure that every vote is counted and any effort by the GOP to steal the election is thwarted.
Less than two weeks after progressive advocacy groups Stand Up America and Indivisible announced that they, along with a coalition of 135 national and state organizations, are organizing "Protect the Results" demonstrations for Nov. 4, the number of planned events had more than doubled by Tuesday.
With Trump declaring Monday night that the country "must have final total on November 3rd," progressives warn that the president could not be more blatant in his intentions to try to make it so that millions and millions of legitimate mail-in and absentee ballots won't be counted.
Organizers across the country are planning at least 375 events at government buildings and other public spaces, and are urging supporters to visit the Protect the Results coalition's website or text PROTECT to 21333 to RSVP to public actions or plan their own.
"We think the likelihood of activation is high," a note added to each event page reads. "Join us to honor the valid results of the 2020 election, ensure that every vote is counted, and show up to demand the peaceful transition of power."
The coalition released a video earlier this year warning of the president's threats to democracy, including his refusal to commit to a peaceful transfer of power should he lose the election and his encouragement of voter intimidation by the U.S. military and his supporters.
Members of the coalition include Common Cause, Poder Latinx, and End Citizens United Action Fund. As record numbers of voters have gone to the polls to participate in early voting, dropped of their ballots, or mailed them in recent weeks, voting rights advocates have warned that President Donald Trump, who is trailing Democratic candidate Joe Biden in polls in 10 of the 12 swing states that could decide the election, will try to ensure many of those votes aren't counted.
"Mobilizing to win big isn't enough when it comes to Trump—we must protect the results," tweeted Women's March, another member of the coalition.
It’s clear Trump will do anything to cheat his way through an election he knows he’s losing.
We’re fighting for a democracy where everyone counts. But mobilizing to win big isn’t enough when it comes to Trump—we must #ProtectTheResults. Learn more here: https://t.co/mI00gDDPcI pic.twitter.com/b5UrOSqaPh
— Women's March - Text VOTE to 44310 (@womensmarch) October 21, 2020
Momentum grew on Tuesday following the U.S. Supreme Court ruling in which the right wing-led court rejected a request from the Wisconsin Democratic Party and voting rights groups to extend the deadline for counting absentee ballots in the key battleground state of Wisconsin. The decision upholds the state's vote-tallying deadline as Nov. 3 at 8:00 p.m., likely disenfranchising voters who don't cast their ballots in person on Election Day to avoid contracting the coronavirus, which is spreading rapidly in Wisconsin.
Progressives were alarmed by the opinion put forward by Trump-appointed Justice Brett Kavanaugh—who along with Chief Justice John Roberts and newly-confirmed Justice Amy Coney Barrett served on former President George W. Bush's legal team during the contested 2000 presidential election—in which the judge echoed the president's baseless claims that counting absentee ballots that arrive after Election Day, as at least 18 states do, will invite election-rigging by the Democrats.
The Protect the Results coalition says activating an organized resistance against Republican efforts to call the election in favor of Trump before all the votes are counted and stand in the way of a peaceful transfer of power is crucial in the days before the final votes are cast.
"We see these mobilizations as a critical way to counter any misinformation from Trump," Sean Eldridge, founder of Stand Up America, told CNN earlier this month.