UPDATE 1-Trump says people in North Carolina should vote twice

Sept 3- U.S. President Donald Trump suggested on Wednesday that people in the state of North Carolina should vote twice in the November election, once in person and once by mail, although doing so is a crime. “Let them send it in and let them go vote,” Trump said in an interview with WECT-TV in Wilmington, North Carolina, when asked about the security of mail-in votes.

Sept 3 (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump suggested on

Wednesday that people in the state of North Carolina should vote

twice in the November election, once in person and once by mail,

although doing so is a crime.

“Let them send it in and let them go vote,” Trump said in aninterview with WECT-TV in Wilmington, North Carolina, when askedabout the security of mail-in votes. “And if the system is asgood as they say it is then obviously they won’t be able tovote” in person.

Voting more than once in an election is illegal.

“President Trump outrageously encouraged” North Carolinians”to break the law in order to help him sow chaos in ourelection.” state Attorney General Josh Stein said in a tweet.”Make sure you vote, but do NOT vote twice! I will do everythingin my power to make sure the will of the people is upheld inNovember.”

U.S. Attorney General William Barr told CNN that Trump “wastrying to make the point that the ability to monitor this systemis not good.” Told that voting twice is illegal, he said, “Idon’t know what the law in the particular state says.”

Barr said mail-in ballots for the Nov. 3 election could bevulnerable to fraud, echoing an argument Trump has made todenounce the use of voting by mail.

Trump has previously said the voting method is susceptibleto large-scale fraud, although experts say voter fraud of anykind is extremely rare in the United States.

Voting by mail is not new in the United States – nearly onein four voters cast presidential ballots in 2016 that way.

A record number of mail-in ballots are expected for the Nov.3 election due to concerns about in-person voting during thecoronavirus pandemic.

Trump has accused Democrats of trying to steal the electionby pushing the use of mail-in voting. The re-election campaignof Trump has recently sued states like New Jersey and Nevada forexpanding access to mail-in voting.

Democrats have said Trump and fellow Republicans areattempting to suppress the vote to help their side.(Reporting by Kanishka Singh and Ann Maria Shibu in Bengaluru;Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan and William Mallard)