B²: A Rigged Election

Over the weekend, Donald Trump and company (shout out to Rudy Giuliani!) began to speculate about the possibility of a rigged election. These cries have only become louder and more numerous in recent days. And you can bet they will continue if the poll numbers increasingly favor Hillary Clinton.

Whether you find any validity in Trump and company’s claims, it’s a great moment to turn the conversation to voter ID laws, and what it means to move through the election process in a free and fair way.

Good thing it’s Tuesday, B² day.

Here is this week’s likely media question and the B² (block and bridge) that sets the narrative straight:

Q: “Donald Trump has started talking about the possibility of a ‘rigged election.’ Do you think he’s right?”

B²: “We can all agree that a free and fair election is everyone’s goal, and those who meet the requirements to vote should be allowed to vote. One way we make sure those requirements are met is <insert talking point>.”

Wherever you take the conversation next, move away from talk that includes a “rigged election” and similar conspiracy theories. Use this moment to have a serious conversation about voter ID laws, an issue that resurfaces every election cycle. If we want to guarantee free and fair elections, we need to start outlining what that process looks like and why. Last minute cries of “it’s rigged!” don’t resonate, especially at the end of an election cycle that seemingly won’t quit.

For more talking points on how to defend voter ID, read Beverly’s column in The Daily Signal.

B²: “ID, please?”

Game on!

Last night, the primary process got real. With Iowa’s votes in the history books, and New Hampshire and South Carolina and (you fill in the blank) around the corner, the rhetoric between candidates and the public is about to heat up…including cries of “voter fraud!”

If 2000 isn’t reminder enough, just look to North Carolina and New Hampshire to see the tensions mount as news stories detail newer, stricter voter ID laws.

Per usual, the political parties are split on the issue – liberals accuse conservatives of trying to block the minority vote; conservatives accuse liberals of allowing people to vote who are ineligible in order to gain support. And while it’s doubtful that either side plans to wave the white flag, the reporters will still pounce. Do you know how to avoid messaging traps in questions about voter fraud?

Good thing it’s Tuesday, B² day.

Here is this week’s likely media question and the B² (block and bridge) that sets the narrative straight:

Q: “The stricter voter ID laws in North Carolina and New Hampshire are blocking votes. Isn’t it time to lessen the requirements for voters and let the democratic process play out?”

B²: “The opposite is true. For each and every vote to count, a fair and transparent voting process is essential. This is especially true as we prepare to elect the next President, because one of the major issues he/she will face is <insert policy issue>…”

Wherever you take the conversation next, use your 30-second max answer time to acknowledge that voter fraud is a thing and then transition to a significant issue all voters should care about as they make their way to the ballot box. Remain supportive of the democratic process and the importance of allowing only eligible voters to vote FOR THE REASON that voters should nominate a candidate willing to deal with <insert policy issue>.