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Bernie Sanders. Photo: Tim Vizer/AFP via Getty Images

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) in an interview with Politico on Friday warned that Americans must ready themselves for the possibility that President Trump will refuse to leave office even if he loses November's election.

What he's saying: "Trump was saying ... ‘the only way they can take this election away from us is if this is a rigged election,’" Sanders recalled, alluding to Trump comments from the Republican National Convention. "Now he is making that statement at a time when virtually every national poll has him behind."

  • Sanders also suggested that comments made during Trump's Fox News interview with Chris Wallace in July could signal the president's unwillingness to concede.
    • Trump told Wallace when asked whether he'd accept the election results, "I have to see. Look, you — I have to see. No, I’m not going to just say yes. I’m not going to say no, and I didn’t last time, either."

What to watch: Sanders plans to "alert the American people about what that nightmarish scenario might look like in order to prepare them for that possibility and talk about what we do if that happens."

  • The senator is calling on journalists and social media companies to inform people that election results could come days, if not weeks, after November 3, given the anticipated surge in mail-in voting due to the pandemic
  • He's also calling on state legislatures to allow elections workers to start counting mail-in ballots prior to the election.

Go deeper

The top Republicans who aren't voting for Trump in 2020

Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said last week that he cannot support President Trump's re-election.

Why it matters: Hogan, a moderate governor in a blue state, joins other prominent Republicans who have publicly said they will either not vote for Trump's re-election this November or will back Biden.

When and how to vote in all 50 states

Expand chart
Data: RepresentUS; Note: Montana has told counties they can opt into universal vote-by-mail; Map: Naema Ahmed/Axios

Millions of Americans who normally vote in person on election day will turn to early voting or mail-in ballots this fall — but that only works if you understand your state's election rules, deadlines and how to ensure your vote is counted.

Driving the news: Axios is launching an interactive resource, built on research by RepresentUs, a nonpartisan election reform group, to help voters across the country to get the information they need.

Special report on virus-era voting: Prepare for unprecedented threats

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

With rare, if not unprecedented, agreement, President Trump, Joe Biden, intelligence officials and Big Tech CEOs are all warning of threats to accurate and trusted vote counts before, on and after election day. 

American elections face a triple threat in 2020: 

  • Foreign governmentsespecially Russia, China and Iran — are actively spreading misinformation via social platforms.