Jake Tapper may be on vacation, but he is incapable of ignoring the news.
“It’s difficult to keep away from it, just because, I mean, I am such a news junkie that any attempt to not have my phone right nearby will not work,” the CNN host told Seth Meyers Tuesday night. He said he’s “already up to speed” on the big Jonathan Swan interview, the “horrible tragedy” in Lebanon, and President Trump “flip-flopping on vote-by-mail, as long as it’s in the state he thinks he can win,” adding, “I can’t stop.”
The “flip-flop” he was referring to came in a tweet from the president earlier in the day that read, “Whether you call it Vote by Mail or Absentee Voting, in Florida the election system is Safe and Secure, Tried and True.” That of course came after he has spent the past several weeks calling vote-by-mail inherently fraudulent.
Later in the interview, the Late Night host asked Tapper to predict what might happen on Election Night given that the final results are unlikely to come in until days or even weeks later. “How do you prepare for a night like that?” Meyers asked.
“One of the things to think about is just how many of those House seats we didn’t find out about in the 2018 election until a week later,” Tapper replied. “And while it was clear the Democrats were going to take the House, it wasn’t clear what the margin was going to be, and a lot of them were on the West Coast where they have vote-by-mail and there was an extensive accounting system.”
He said that the media needs to “make sure that voters are prepared for what might end up not being a clear winner on Election Night.”
“I think people just need to be prepared,” Tapper added. “I mean, it could be that we know, if it’s a landslide for Biden or for Trump.” But assuming that’s not the case, “people need to just understand that it might take a little while.”
“Do you think the president comprehends or understands that?” Meyers asked with a smile.
“I can’t really speak for what the president comprehends or understands,” Tapper said. “Right now, I’m just focusing my hope and desire that he understands and comprehends what needs to be done to contain this pandemic, because that remains, to me, at least, it seems, and every health expert I interview, out of range for him, as of now in terms of what needs to be done. So in terms of electoral math, no, I don’t think he gets it, no.”