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Democracy is on the ballot in U.S. midterms with ‘conspiracy’ candidates: David Frum

Click to play video: 'Democracy is at stake in U.S. midterm elections: David Frum'
Democracy is at stake in U.S. midterm elections: David Frum
WATCH: Democracy is at stake in U.S. midterm elections, David Frum says – Nov 6, 2022

A strong showing from Republican candidates who believe in conspiracy theories during next week’s United States midterm elections could deepen cracks in the country’s democracy, political commentator David Frum is warning.

His concern comes as multiple candidates in midterm races across the country, “who believe in all kinds of QAnon conspiracy theories,” Frum said, and have supported former U.S. president Donald Trump’s false assertion that the 2020 presidential election was stolen.

“A lot of people who are loyal to president Trump did try, back then, to overturn (the) election,” Frum told Mercedes Stephenson during an interview for The West Block, aired Sunday.

“They didn’t quite have the power to do it. But the results of 2022 mean they may have the power to do it in 2024.”
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America’s hopes and fears: taking the pulse of voters on eve of U.S. midterms

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A number of lower-profile races, he said, have been stacked with candidates who Frum called “pro-Trump weirdos.” They subscribe to these debunked conspiracy theories, he said, and electing these folks is “one of the major goals of pro-Trump Republicans.”

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“If the Republicans have a good year in 2022, which it looks like they will, they will elect many, many of these people to run elections in a way … that is aggressively unfair, and that will set aside the will of the voters,” Frum said.

“The problem is, the party that is poised to make these gains is one that is not committed to the democratic system anymore, as much as it ought to be.”

When Americans cast their ballots next week, they will being doing so for the first time since Jan. 6, 2021, when a pro-Trump mob stormed Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.
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With the events of Jan. 6 front of mind, Frum isn’t the only person characterizing the race as a high-stakes battle for democracy. Speaking on Wednesday, U.S. President Joe Biden issued a similar warning.

“In a typical year, we are not often faced with the question of whether the vote we cast will preserve democracy or put it at risk,” he said. “But we are this year.”

Should Trump decide to run once more in 2024, Frum said it will mark “one of the single most important issues in American politics.”

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Meanwhile, multiple people — including U.S. Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger — have warned that political violence is escalating in the United States, most recently when a man attacked House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband during a break in at their home.

According to court documents filed by prosecutors, who labeled the incident a politically-motivated assault, the attacker told police after his arrest that he had planned to kidnap the speaker, interrogate her and break her kneecaps if she “lied.”
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Meanwhile, the chances of the Republicans taking the House next week are “near certain,” according to Frum, adding that “it’s not impossible the Democrats hold onto the Senate, but it’s more probable that the Republicans take both.”

— with files from The Associated Press

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