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'It's the same thing': Experts baffled by Trump's misleading distinction between 'absentee' and 'mail-in' ballots

July 10, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Election workers sort vote-by-mail ballots for the presidential primary at King County Elections in Renton, Washington on March 10, 2020. (Photo by Jason Redmond / AFP) (Photo by JASON REDMOND/AFP via Getty Images)

President Donald Trump has railed against "mail-in voting" while defending "absentee voting," baffling experts who say those voting systems are essentially the same thing.

"Mail-In Ballot fraud found in many elections.

"No-excuse mail voting or absentee voting -- whatever you call it -- is essentially the same thing," said David Becker, founder of the nonpartisan Center for Election Innovation and Research.

In addition to conflating absentee voting and mail-in voting, Trump raised the possibility that the election would be "rigged" and that 20% of the votes would be "fraudulent ballots. " Based on turnout in past presidential elections, 20% of the vote would amount to at least 20 million votes.

These safeguards are in place for all postal voting, regardless of whether someone has voted absentee for many election cycles or is requesting an absentee ballot for the first time this year.

CNN has repeatedly fact-checked Trump's wildly untrue claims about voting-by-mail, allegations of fraudulent elections, and his far-fetched theories about foreign countries printing ballots.

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