Sore losers always look for someone else to blame. It’s never that they performed poorly. The other team cheated, they say, because there was no other outcome possible for us but a victory. Losers never objectively examine their own failings or seek to overcome them; they never look within themselves to learn why they lost.
When Democrats lost the 2016 election, there was introspection within the party, not finger pointing. Never, not once, did I hear Hillary Clinton say Republicans cheated. She accepted her narrow defeat because it was the will of the people. She swiftly conceded to Donald Trump and President Obama hosted the president-elect at the Oval Office within a couple of days. The transition began immediately.
I never expected Trump to behave graciously after being handed a loss. Grace is not in his nature. He has shown himself time and again to be a petulant man-child, so we shouldn’t be surprised he is in full flight from reality, blaming his election loss on everybody but himself.
“I WON THE ELECTION,” Trump tweeted Wednesday.
No, Donnie, you didn’t win the election. President-elect Joe Biden captured 306 electoral votes to your 232. He attracted nearly 79 million popular votes, a record, to your 73 million. That’s a landslide, using Trump’s own 2016 metrics.
Nevertheless, the internet lit up with all manner of conspiracy theories describing nefarious schemes aimed at hijacking the election. One of the most repeated is that Dominion Voting Systems, a Denver-based company that sells election technology, rigged the vote in Biden’s favor.
Trump was quick to spread the lie even though the Department of Homeland security declared last week, “There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised” while calling the 2020 election, “the most secure in American history.”
Trump’s handpicked DHS appointees approved that message.
Last Friday, Dominion Voting addressed the lies on its website, saying, “The unsubstantiated claim about the deletion of 2.7 million pro-Trump votes posted on the Internet and spread on social media has been taken down and debunked by independent fact checkers.”
Dominion categorically denied that it is partisan, saying it has no ties to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the Clinton Global Initiative or Venezuela. The company said there were no software glitches, adding the 2020 results are 100% auditable. The full statement can be read at dominionvoting.com.
I don’t expect Trump’s cult of personality to believe any of this, so convinced are they of their Dear Leader’s divinity. It’s not possible, they reason, that tens of millions of Americans are fed up with this president’s falsehoods and failures.
Trump is always projecting his own dishonesty on others, charging they would do what he has historically done, that is, lie, cheat, and steal, as if everyone shares his amorality, as if everyone is a pathological liar and unrepentant thief. That would be in keeping with his insecurities and his narcissism, a cynical rejection of the fundamental goodness of most American people.
In his hissy fit of pique, Trump is also endangering national security by not allowing the Biden transition to proceed as is customary, even when the votes are not yet certified. This only requires a sign-off by the General Services Administration’s chief Emily Murphy, but she’s a Trump appointee who bogusly claims there has been no “ascertainment” of the election’s winner.
Murphy and other Trump employees are going to discover loyalty to this president won’t help their careers. Prospective employers seek honesty, but most everyone working for Trump has been forced to prostitute their integrity if they expected to keep their jobs. Those who refused, decorated war veteran Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman for example, were not just fired but publicly humiliated by the president.
One Republican with integrity, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensberger, is overseeing the state’s manual ballot recount, where Biden leads Trump by 14,000 votes. His honesty has attracted Trump’s ire, with two of the president’s henchmen, Sen. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina and Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia, going after Raffensberger.
The secretary of state, who said he and his wife have received “unsettling” telephone threats, told the Washington Post Graham suggested during a call he simply throw out legally cast absentee ballots, while Collins has been spreading misinformation about Georgia’s election, according to Raffensberger, who called the congressman a “liar.”
None of this GOP kabuki theater will change the 2020 election result. It’s over, Joe Biden won, and it’s time to move on.
I expect Trump will never admit to himself or his true believers that he lost this election. What I think he’ll do is slink off to his resort in Florida sometime next month and not return to Washington. It wouldn’t surprise me if he absented himself from Biden’s Jan. 20 inauguration, such is his pettiness.
I doubt Trump will be missed.