Weeks of early voting ‘ridiculous’ but the GOP has to accept it

  • Kellyanne Conway wrote in a new essay that Trump’s campaign for the White House in 2024 should not be dismissed.
  • In her New York Times op-ed, Conway also stressed that GOP leaders must embrace early voting.
  • “Republicans must … invest in early voting and be vocal about it,” Conway wrote in the essay.

Former Trump senior White House adviser Kellyanne Conway said in a recent op-ed that it was “ridiculous” that some states allowed voting “almost two months before Election Day” as part of the 2020 coronavirus measures, but argued that the Republican Party must accept the reality of early voting in order to survive.

Conway, a veteran pollster who ran former President Donald Trump’s successful 2016 White House campaign, laid out the pros and cons of a second term for the former president, who launched his third bid for the White House late last year, in an essay for the New York Times.

In the essay, Conway noted that Trump experienced a decline in support from independents and white college-educated voters from 2016 to 2020 — blocs that cast critical votes for incumbent Joe Biden in hotly contested swing states such as Arizona, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin in the last election.

She also highlighted the growing importance of early voting, which has skyrocketed in popularity across the country and has been fully supported by Democratic candidates — who have encouraged voters to get out and cast their ballots using this method. Trump, however, has long claimed — without evidence — that early and mail-in voting is rife with fraud.

But after the 2022 primaries — which showed Republicans fell well short of expectations — some strategists within the party said Trump’s crusade against early voting may have cost them critical levels of support in states where they will need to shore up their ground in 2024 to have any chances of defeating Biden and securing a majority in the United States Senate.

“Republicans must … invest in early voting and be vocal about it,” Conway wrote in the essay. “This is a contest for ballots, not just votes. As ridiculous as it is to vote nearly two months before Election Day and count the votes three weeks after, some of the state’s voting measures imposed by Covid are now permanent.”

“If those are the rules, adapt or die politically,” she added.

Last month, Conway took aim at Republican senators who did not campaign for former NFL star Herschel Walker, the Georgia Republican Senate candidate who was defeated by incumbent Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in a December 2022 runoff.

“People are saying, ‘We need a new message.’ Let me just say something respectfully to the 49 Republican senators: Where have most of you been? Why weren’t you in Georgia?” she asked during an appearance on Fox News.

Conway also reiterated that the GOP needs to figure out how to incorporate early voting into its future turnout strategies.

“We have to get these votes ready early,” she continued to say while on Fox. “Let’s take a big chance to get someone out of work, out of the house, out of traffic, not feeling sick that day. If you can invest their votes in October, let’s do it.”

“I don’t like it because it’s favorable to the government. I don’t like it because it’s not election day, it’s election season, election quarter. But those are the rules,” she added.

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