On Friday's New Day on CNN, during a discussion of early voting statistics from North Carolina finding black turnout is down from 2012, co-host Chris Cuomo asserted that "it seems to be rigged against the African-American vote" as he recalled Donald Trump's accusations of election "rigging," and suggested that there was "sinister" activity by the Republican legislature in making changes in the election system.
At 5:21 a.m. ET, the Boston Globe's Matt Viser suggested that early voting may be down because there have been fewer polling places open than in 2012. Viser: "One caveat with North Carolina, though, is the polling sites are dramatically less than they were four years ago -- Guilford County where Greensboro is for example -- there were 15 or 18 sites in 2012 for early voting. Now there's one."
After co-host Alisyn Camerota jumped in to recall that there had been a lawsuit about changes in voting laws in North Carolina, Viser added: "To open up, you know, have more early voting, but, you know, for the sites, you know, that so much has not survived some of the challenges, that changes things."
Cuomo jumped in to inject:
But it was a little more sinister than that. This isn't a systemic issue of, you know, of resources. This is deliberate. That's what the lawsuit said, was that basically, you had a Republican effort to find all the different ways to retard the African-American vote and put it into law, you know. The irony is, Trump was talking about this is a rigged system. He may be right in North Carolina, but it seems to be rigged against the African-American vote. How real is that, Errol?
CNN political commentator Errol Louis agreed as he began:
Oh, that's very real. I mean, what you just described is something that the findings of a federal court, I mean, the judge looked at it and said, "It seems as if you went out of your way to find every fashion and form in which you could sort of suppress this vote and then implement those as your policies."
He then added:
And, indeed, there was quite an interesting paper trail where the legislature said, "Hey, what are the places where black voters tend to sort of come out and what are the reasons? And then let's go step by step and try and change all of those." They said it was just politics.
They may be right. It may be politics, really bad politics. We're going to talk to his campaign. He says you've got to go out and watch, and you know what I mean by "watch." Who responds to the call? These white supremacists say we're going to organize and go out there. And then the campaign doesn't, you don't see Donald Trump come out and say, "I wasn't talking about you, I don't want you anywhere near my polls." Very weird message.