Dr. Scott Atlas encourages large holiday gatherings. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) has “inquired about” unlawfully tossing Georgia absentee ballots, while the person to whom he made the suggestion – Republican Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger – gets death threats from Just Folks who want Trump to get the Georgia electoral votes. The Missouri Senate can’t meet because too many senators and staffers tested positive, after a mask-less retreat several days ago. (Same story. Different M state.) Meanwhile, the New York Times reports 166,581 new COVID-19 cases on November 16, 82% more than 14 days ago. And from President Trump? Silence.
Sheer stupidity. Arrogance too. A regular You Are Not The Boss of Me fun fest.
Against this backdrop people rant on about President Trump’s right to exhaust his options regarding the 2020 election, in furtherance of proving evident fraud.
Fraud facts. Like, from a lawyer facts. First, in civil cases the plaintiff must prove fraud with specificity. Specific facts. And proof must meet the clear and convincing evidence, or highly likely, standard in most jurisdictions. Why? Because it’s so easy to say “fraud” and expect others to say “Yep.”
Second, fraud in elections happens rarely. Proven fraud that will affect the tens of thousands of vote which must flip to change the election? Less likely than what you see in this painting – no, not a photograph – from my family room. (Even recounts – forget about fraud and assume honest errors, if one gives anyone a benefit of the doubt in these times – will not change the outcome of this election.)*
Nevertheless, the fraud blah blah and “the media doesn’t tell us who won” noise holds up the normal transition process. Wait. What? The media does not play a formal role. True dat, for sure, but remember the fact that POTUS demanded the declaration of a winner on election night, with no counting thereafter. Stupid, for sure, as we haven’t counted every ballot on Election Day in living history, if ever. And, we have laws in plenty of states – Michigan and Pennsylvania among them – which make counting all of the ballots on Election Day impossible.
What of it? Why not indulge a spoiled brat’s tantrum for a little while longer? Well, if you and yours believe government has no meaningful, positive role in our lives, why not? After all, none of our enemies – think China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia – will pay any attention to what’s going on here and try to take advantage of the situation. No, none of them would do that!
Then, of course, there’s the pandemic. Mr. Trump told us, in the run up to the election, the military would handle COVID-19 vaccine distribution logistics. (lots of logistics associated with this thing.) Then, peeved, he fired his DoD Secretary. (His fifth in less than four years.) Can the Department of Defense function with an acting Secretary of Defense? Sure. Does it work better as a cohesive unit with a leader, confirmed by the Senate, who POTUS supports. Absolutely, and if you don’t think that matters, you know nothing about cohesion in large organizations. Leadership matters. Really!
So here we are. The American people chose a new leader. Tens of millions of people voted for “stay the course” and millions more, living and voting in the right places, said No Thanks. And, now, a significant share of those who supported the Loser mess with the rest of us. Put our national security at risk. Reduce the potential effectiveness of a vaccine rollout. For what?
I expect that I will change no minds here. That said, when bad stuff happens after January 20, we should consider the asymmetrical craziness which has our country on pause for Lord knows how long, leading up to January 20, 2021. At best, the delays in moving forward with the transition disadvantage us not at all. Everything else is downhill, for no reason other than indulging the sorriest excuse for a public official we will likely ever see.
*I have Right Wing friends who tell me even one fraudulent vote is one vote too many. Of course, they never express a modicum of concern about legal or illegal acts which have as their sole evident purpose interfering with the right to vote.