Trump’s comments came during a wide-ranging interview with “Fox News Sunday” host Chris Wallace in which he criticized so-called cancel culture and repeatedly downplayed the coronavirus, which has infected more than 3.7 million people in the U.S. and killed at least 140,131, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
During the interview, Wallace debuted the results of Fox News’ latest national poll, which showed Democratic candidate for president Joe Biden leading Trump by 8%. The poll showed Biden leading on specific issues as well, including a 1% lead over Trump on the economy.
When presented with the results, Trump downplayed the findings as “fake polls.”
“First of all, I’m not losing because those are fake polls,” he said. “They were fake in 2016 and now they’re even more fake.”
Later in the interview, when Wallace asked whether Trump is a “gracious” loser, the president responded that “it depends” and repeated claims he has made in the past that mail-in voting could lead to widespread voter fraud.
With the coronavirus spreading rapidly across large swaths of the U.S., some states have made efforts to more readily accommodate mail-in voting to reduce the risk of infection at in-person voting locations come November. Trump has previously attacked efforts made by officials in Michigan and Nevada to expand vote-by-mail access, repeatedly saying that they will lead to voter fraud, though he hasn’t presented evidence to back up that claim.
“I think mail-in voting is going to rig the election,” he said in Sunday’s interview. “I really do.”
Wallace pressed Trump on whether he will accept the results of the 2020 election, but Trump declined to answer the question directly.
“I have to see. Look, you—I have to see,” he said. “No, I’m not going to just say yes. I’m not going to say no.”
Earlier in the interview, Trump downplayed the coronavirus pandemic, attributing the recent surge in cases to increased testing and saying that many infected people “automatically” recover from the virus. Health officials have repeatedly pointed out that new cases have outpaced the increase in testing, which indicates that the virus is spreading rapidly in communities across the country.
When Wallace pointed to the European Union, which he said is reporting about 6,000 new cases per day, Trump said it’s because “they don’t test” and declined to acknowledge differences in policy responses between Europe and the U.S.
The U.S. has reported on average 66,498 new cases of the coronavirus per day over the past seven days, up more than 15% compared with a week ago, according to a CNBC analysis of data from Hopkins. Thirty-six states and the District of Columbia have reported growth in cases by at least 5%, on average over the past week. And Covid-19 deaths,…
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