These elections indicate that Republicans mistakenly think the 2020 election was not valid, when it clearly was.
It is perfectly clear, however, that Republicans’ lack of confidence in the infrastructure of our current election is a direct result of Trump’s historic efforts to reduce the legitimacy of the 2020 results.
But the lion’s share of Republicans (65%) disagreed, saying they did not believe all elections were fair and properly conducted, consistent with the Ipsos voting described above. This 65% is a discrepancy in recent times.
Voters for the losing candidate in those elections had far more confidence in the results of the 2020 election than Trump voters. In every election from 2004 to 2016, between 8% and 14% of the losing candidates said they did not believe at all that the election was valid. In 2016, just 11% of Hillary Clinton voters were not convinced at all.
This means that Republicans are somewhere between 40 points and 50 points, likely to say around this time that they had no confidence in the results compared to the support of any losing candidate in recent times.
The big difference this time is that the losing candidate repeatedly doubted the results.
Today, only 28% of Republicans say it should make everything easier for citizens to vote. Compared to 71%, those who say that citizens should prove that they really want to vote.
Back in 2018 (before Trump lost), the split was close to 48% of Republicans who believed that voting should be made easier by 51%, which voters should prove.
(Democrats, by comparison, have barely moved on to the question that 85% of debating voting should be made as easy as possible. It was 84% in 2018.)
The only thing that really changed between 2018 and 2021 was the 2020 election.
It should be noted that Republicans are in a minority on this issue. Most Americans (59%) say that everything should be done to make things easier for citizens to vote.
Perhaps most importantly, it is not at all clear that efforts to appease the skeptics in the system will actually work.
We can see this by looking at studies on voter photo identification laws that a lot of Republicans have endorsed to ensure that those who are voting say who they are.
Those who believe in conspiracy theories find ways to distrust the truth.
It will actually help people have more confidence in our electoral process if Trump and other Republicans stop lying to their voters and accept the truth: Biden legitimately won the election.