“Vote by mail fraud is fake news,” actor-comedian Ed Helms said at the top of the virtual event, which doubled as a $2 million fundraiser for the organization RepresentUs, a so-called “right-left” group whose stated goal is to ensure electoral integrity. The organization is aggressively pushing for vote by mail as a way to make elections safer and more inclusive.
During Sunday’s Zoom event, leaders of RepresentUs claimed that voting by mail is the same thing as absentee voting. It’s the “same exact thing,” said Josh Silver, executive director Represent Us. He added that people need to “push against” President Donald Trump’s rhetoric against vote by mail.
As Breitbart News
previously reported, the two aren’t the same. Universal mail-in voting doesn’t require a voter to request a ballot. Instead, registered voters are mailed a ballot unsolicited. By contrast, absentee voting requires a voter to request an absentee ballot before election day.
President Trump has repeatedly attacked vote by mail as a system that is highly susceptible to fraud. Recent incidents that have supported his claims include
arrests in New Jersey for election fraud and mail-in voting fraud; and a mail carrier in Virginia who pleaded guilty to election fraud.
Despite these recent incidents, RepresentUs is pushing the notion that voter fraud is less common than being injured on the toilet or dating a millionaire.
Drunk History provided a humorous tutorial on the virtues of vote by mail, while Jersey Boys actor Erich Bergen sang a number about the reliability of the U.S. Postal Service.
Among the anti-Trump Republicans who appeared during Sunday’s event were former Rep. Carlos Curbelo of Florida and former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge, who served during the George W. Bush administration. Curbelo urged people to “come together, fight the misinformation” and to “make sure it is OK to vote by mail.”
Represent Us is also pushing aggressively to re-brand Election Day as “Election Week,” arguing that “mail ballots will take time to be counted.”
Jennifer Lawrence, who also serves as a Represent Us board member, put in a brief appearance to promote a Bloomberg News study highlighting the historical role of states in pressuring the federal government to change laws.
Other celebrities who appeared briefly to provide comic relief were Chelsea Handler, Sarah Silverman, Randall Park, Nick Kroll, and Zooey Deschanel.
The fundraising portion of the evening included musical performances by Ben Harper, Dave Matthews, Liz Phair, and Alicia Keys.
Follow David Ng on Twitter @HeyItsDavidNg. Have a tip? Contact me at email@example.com