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Democrats hatch plans to counter Trump's attempts to cast doubt on election results

October 19, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at Muskegon County Airport, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, in Norton Shores, Mich. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Behind the scenes, Democrats are preparing to confront President Donald Trump if he loses the election next month to Democrat Joe Biden -- if Trump claims that the result is rigged, refuses to engage in a peaceful transition or tries to challenge the result through the courts, Congress or statehouses.

(CNN)Behind the scenes, Democrats are preparing to confront President Donald Trump if he loses the election next month to Democrat Joe Biden -- if Trump claims that the result is rigged, refuses to engage in a peaceful transition or tries to challenge the result through the courts, Congress or statehouses.

The Biden campaign and congressional Democrats are strategizing together to wage a post-election response to Trump on two fronts -- anticipating both a legal challenge and a messaging war -- as Trump's attacks on the election have only intensified while he's lagging in the polls two weeks ahead of Election Day, with voting already underway.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Democrats released a report on Sunday titled, "Counting Votes & What to Expect on Election Day," aimed at preemptively pushing back on Trump's claims of fraud, which details how not all states are likely to finish counting their votes on November 3.

A Biden campaign official told CNN the campaign is coordinating with Democrats on Capitol Hill and voting rights groups with messaging around Trump's attacks on the integrity of the election.

The campaign has also spoken with social media companies about combating misinformation and about the reporting of election results, the official said.

"Donald Trump can bluster and lie all he wants, but we're confident that this election will be decided fairly, and we've built the largest voter protection program in history to prepare for any contingency and fight back against any attempt by Trump to interfere with the democratic process," said Biden campaign spokesman Mike Gwin.

After the election, Ridge said, the group's focus will shift to ensuring a peaceful transfer of power from one administration to the next, including continuing to push back on Trump's efforts to undermine the legitimacy of late-counted ballots.

Trump's use of social media to potentially raise doubts about the election results or prematurely declare victory is perhaps Democrats' biggest concern.

The Biden campaign official said there have been conversations with social media companies about fighting against election misinformation and the reporting of election results.

Democrats say they're hopeful that in the event Trump loses the election, some of the congressional Republicans who have stood by his side for four years will begin distancing themselves from him, pointing to the pushback Trump received after he refused to commit to a peaceful transition of power.

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