President Trump had some remarkable things to say at the inaugural meeting of his Commission to Promote Voter Suppression and Justify Trump’s False Claims, which is formally known as the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. He also asked a question that deserves an answer. Lest anyone believe Vice President Pence’s claim that “this commission has no preconceived notions or preordained results,” Trump was on hand last week to state clearly what its agenda is. With the resignation of Sean Spicer as White House press secretary and the rise of Anthony Scaramucci as White House communications czar (an appropriate word these days), the television cameras are riveted on the latest reality show, “Spicey and The Mooch.” But we dare not lose track of the threat the Trump administration poses to the most basic of democratic rights.
Remember that in January, Trump told congressional leaders that between 3 million and 5 million illegal votes were cast in last year’s election and that they were the reason he lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by 2.9 million.
There is not a shred of evidence for this — none, zero, zilch. Trump’s defenders could find no plausible way to support his statement, which is not unusual. But Trump never backs off from a falsehood. So instead, he did something without precedent: He appointed a presidential commission solely to justify an offhand lie.