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Trump encourages Republicans to vote for 'weakest Democrat'

Registered Republicans can't vote on Tuesday
Posted at 11:23 PM, Feb 10, 2020

At a massive rally of his supporters in New Hampshire on Monday, President Donald Trump encouraged Republicans to cross over and vote for the "weakest Democrat" for Tuesday's New Hampshire primary.

"We hear that there could be because you have crossovers in primaries, don't you? So I hear a lot of Republicans tomorrow will vote for the weakest candidate possible of the Democrats," Trump said.

While this has been discussed for years, voters would have had to plan this move a long time ago.

In order for registered Republicans to vote in the Democratic primary on Tuesday, they would have had to change their registration with local election officials by October 25, 2019.

"The last day a registered voter can change their party affiliation before the 2020 presidential primary is October 25, 2019. Supervisors of the checklist are required to meet on that day at least between 7:00-7:30 p.m. to accept party changes," according to the New Hampshire Secretary of State.

Trump used the opportunity on Monday to take a jab at his Democratic rivals.

"My only problem is I'm trying to figure out who is their weakest candidate," Trump said. "I think they're all weak."

Voting to sabotage the opposition is something officials in New Hampshire said they're trying to avoid.

"It is important that before the act of voting that people who are registered with a party are locked in from the day before the filing period until the primary,” Deputy Secretary of State David Scanlan previously told the Associated Press . “The reason for that is to prevent games from being played with migrations from a party where there might be an uncontested race or races on the ballot moving into the other party to try to impact the outcome for that party’s primary.”

The idea of party raiding has been brandied about in the past. In 2008, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh encouraged his listeners to vote for then Sen. Hillary Clinton to give Republicans an easier opponent in that year's election.