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Hillary Clinton calls out Trump for voting by mail while also opposing it

Hillary Clinton calls out Trump for voting by mail while also opposing it
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Former Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonCornyn spox: Neera Tanden has 'no chance' of being confirmed as Biden's OMB pick Groups seek to get Black vote out for Democrats in Georgia runoffs Biden's political position is tougher than Trump's MORE slammed President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump rages against '60 Minutes' for interview with Krebs Cornyn spox: Neera Tanden has 'no chance' of being confirmed as Biden's OMB pick Pa. lawmaker was informed of positive coronavirus test while meeting with Trump: report MORE on Thursday for “spreading lies” about voting while also casting mail-in ballots.

“Trump himself votes by mail but is spreading lies and making threats to prevent his fellow Americans from pursuing the same option during an epidemic,” the 2016 Democratic presidential nominee tweeted. “It's clear we'll have to work to protect safe access to the ballot box this fall."

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Clinton’s criticism follows Trump’s threat on Wednesday to withhold federal funding to Michigan after its secretary of state, Jocelyn Benson (D), said all registered voters in the state would receive applications for absentee ballots in the mail this year amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“Breaking: Michigan sends absentee ballots to 7.7 million people ahead of Primaries and the General Election,” Trump tweeted Wednesday. “This was done illegally and without authorization by a rogue Secretary of State. I will ask to hold up funding to Michigan if they want to go down this Voter Fraud path!”

Benson responded by noting that the state has sent applications, not ballots.

Trump later tweeted that the state was sending “absentee ballot applications,” though he repeated his allegation that the decision was done “illegally.” 

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Trump has frequently voiced opposition to expanding mail-in voting efforts. Democrats have been pushing to expand such efforts amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Trump campaign spokesman Ken Farnaso defended the president's criticism of vote-by-mail efforts in response to Clinton’s tweet.

Farnaso said Clinton “must be living in an alternative reality,” adding there are “unending examples of voter fraud via vote-by-mail.”

“Democrats want to jeopardize the sanctity of our decentralized election system and put it in the hands of the federal government. Nationalizing a vote-by-mail agenda would only upend the Constitution and take rights away from the states,” he said.

The campaign also pushed back on Clinton’s tweet, clarifying that Trump votes by absentee ballot “not vote by mail.”

Updated at 4 p.m.