President Donald Trump called for a “major investigation” into voter fraud Wednesday, promising to look into people who are registered to vote in two states. Being registered to vote in two states is not illegal nor that uncommon. In fact, five people closely associated with Trump are registered in two states.
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In his first televised interview, Trump told ABC News’ David Muir that there were “millions of votes, in my opinion. Now I’m gonna do an investigation.”
“You have people that are registered who are dead, who are illegals, who are in two states. You have people registered in two states. They’re registered in a New York and a New Jersey. They vote twice,” Trump said, adding that none of the illegal votes were cast for him.
Nearly 7 million Americans in 28 states are registered to vote in two or more states (not including California, Texas or Florida), according to a 2014 Watchdog.org report.
"People on multiple registration lists is real. When you are moving from one state to another the first thing on your mind isn't canceling your old voter registration,” said Daniel A. Smith, a professor of political science at the University of Florida. "Does that mean they are voting in more than one state? Probably not,” Smith told the Sun-Sentinel last year.
Trump’s pick for Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is registered to vote in California and New York, according to CNN, which reports that it has seen paperwork through open records requests. Mnuchin voted in the Republican primary in California in 2016, CNN reported.
Steve Bannon, senior adviser to the president, is registered to vote in Florida and New York, according to the Sarasota (Fla.) Herald-Tribune, which reports that Bannon voted in New York in November. CNN is also reporting the Bannon news.
Tiffany Trump is registered to vote in Pennsylvania, where she was a student until May, and in New York, according to Heat Street. She voted in New York and did not vote in Pennsylvania in November, according to the site. NBC also reported that Tiffany Trump is registered in those states.
The Washington Post reported Thursday that Trump’s son-in-law and adviser Jared Kushner and White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer are registered in two states. Kushner is registered in New York and New Jersey, according to the Post, which cited election officials and voting registration records. Spicer is registered in Virginia and Rhode Island.
“There is nothing illegal about that,” Philadelphia deputy election commissioner Fred Voigt told Heat Street. “The illegality only occurs if one votes in two places, not if you’re registered in both.”
David Becker, the executive director for The Center for Election Innovation and Research, said after the November election that his group found millions of “out of date registration records, but no evidence that voter fraud resulted.”
White House spokesman Sean Spicer said earlier this week that President Trump believes 3 million to 5 million people voted illegally in November’s election, a claim Trump told congressional leaders. Trump won the electoral college, but Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by about 2.8 million votes.