White House press secretary Sean Spicer, in his second daily briefing on Tuesday, defended President Donald Trump for persisting in a claim that millions of people voted illegally in the November election, indicating there would potentially be an investigation.
According to most tallies, namely the influential Cook Political Report, Hillary Clinton beat Trump by nearly 3 million votes in the popular tally, but Trump won by more than 70 votes in the Electoral College. Also, there have been a number of fact-checks and other studies done in an attempt to counter the narrative pushed by Trump on illegal voters.
“The president does believe that. He has stated that before,” Spicer told reporters, according to a live feed of the briefing. “I think he’s stated his concerns of voter fraud and people voting illegally during the campaign, and he continues to maintain that belief based on studies and evidence people have presented to him.”
Prominent Republicans, including House Speaker Paul Ryan, said there is no evidence of voter fraud.
The president first made the claim that he actually won the popular vote in November in a tweet. He reiterated the claim in a meeting with Congressional leaders on Monday.
Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, who has been in a public feud with Trump since 2015, told NBC News that Trump’s claims “[undermine] faith in our democracy.”
But Spicer on Tuesday said that Trump made an off-hand comment during the Congressional meeting.
About five reporters asked him questions on Tuesday during the briefing.
“We’ll see where we go from here but right now the focus that the president has is putting Americans back to work,” Spicer noted.
When asked if there would be an investigation into Trump’s claims of voter fraud, he told reporters that “maybe he will” do so. “Anything’s possible I think at some point,” he said. “There is no investigation. I said it was possible. Anything is possible. It was a hypothetical question.”
“We’ll see where we go from here,” added Spicer.