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WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Democrats are pushing back against President Trump and defending mail-in voting.

They say it’s a necessary safety measure during the coronavirus pandemic. 

“We don’t want to take any chances with fraud,” President Trump said. 

President Trump says he will fight to stop states from allowing more Americans to vote by mail in November.

“It’s going to lead to total election fraud,” President Trump said. “So we don’t want them to do mail-in ballots.”

Wednesday the president suggested he might cut federal aid to Michigan and Nevada after their Secretaries of State mailed ballot applications to all registered voters. 

But other Republican leaders, including Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) stopped short of the president’s view that mail-in ballots lead to fraud.

“We don’t have a problem if someone votes by mail. The problem we have is that you try to federalize an election,” Rep. McCarthy said. 

Newly elected Republican Mike Garcia (R-Calif.) says vote by mail does present challenges even though he just won a special election with mostly mail-in voting.

“It’s concerning that there are significant chain of custody challenges with voting by mail,” Rep. Garcia said. 

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says there’s no evidence that mail-in ballots lead to vote fraud. 

“Voting is under assault,” Speaker Pelosi said. 

She says vote-by-mail is an important safety measure while the coronavirus still threatens. 

“People should not have to choose between voting and preserving their good health,” she said. 

Democrat Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) says opposition to mail-in ballots is purely political. 

“All part of the same broader strategy by the Republican leadership of trying to get fewer Americans to vote,” Rep. Schiff said. 

House Democrats last week approved $3 billion to help states to pay for mail-in ballots, but Republican Senate leaders say that plan won’t pass in the Senate.