It is December 10, 2020. The “safe harbor ” date has now passed. There should be no further claims that Donald Trump has won the election. All of the states have certified the results of the election. Biden’s total will be 306 electoral votes, over 80 million votes by the people, more than any candidate in history with the greatest turnout of all time.
And yet, Trump continues to attempt to undermine the public’s confidence in the election. He has ginned up his followers with “Stop the Steal” . He has made thinly veiled calls for violence. Thus far, it is a few state and local Republican officials who have stood up against his irrational rants and demands. The vast majority of Republican Senators and Congresspeople whimper and lick his boots, writhing in fear of retribution and cowardice, acting as palls rather than patriots, putting party over country, undermining the very democracy they are supposed to represent–undermining their oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution. The cult of Trump is powerful but at the same time full of weak, ideological people, full of grievance and conspiracy theories.
Trump has actively pursued state legislators and asked them to overthrow the will of the people and put forward their own slate of electors. This is sedition. Thus far, this has not occurred. So far, all of the lawsuits that the Trump campaign have filed, save one have failed. Nonetheless, I still feel there are opportunities to undermine the election. At a minimum, the conspiracy theories they have promulgated are intended to undermine Biden’s legitimacy as President.
Ironically, the very people who have stood up in Georgia and decried the threats to peoples’ safety and integrity previously were silent when similar threats were made against others. Now that the threats are coming to their doors, they are waking up. Governor Kemp participated in voter purges and other voter suppression efforts that enabled him to become governor.. Rebecca Solnit points this out in her recent article in The Guardian and reminds her readers of Martin Niemolier’s quote:
“First they came for the socialists and I did not speak out–because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out–because I was not a trade unionists. Then they came for the Jews and I did not speak out–because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak for me.”
At this point, as frustrating as it may be that they are so late to the table and that so many are still silent, I still take solace in the fact that there are a few who have stood up. But, it is increasingly alarming that since Gabriel Sterling, Georgia’s election manager, spoke up last week and demanded that Republicans stop their undermining the integrity of the election, he is alone in the wilderness as only 22 members of Congress have acknowledged that Biden in President-elect.
Each day, I call Mitch McConnell’s office and leave a scathing message. The script, while spontaneous, is essentially the same. Each day I call him out for not putting country over party, for undermining our democracy by not standing up for the integrity of the election, for not recognizing Joe Biden as President-elect, for blood on his hands for not putting forward a meaningful COVID relief package. I try to shame him in to action. I do the same with Lindsay Graham, but ending with John McCain would turn over in his grave and asking him, “What would John McCain do?” Of course, this is voice mail and only the poor low level staffer whose job it is to listen to it will ever hear it. Somehow I feel like I am doing something other than venting. Perhaps I make that staffer cringe with embarrassment to be working for such reprehensible people.
It is clear to me that there is a slow moving attempt to undertake a coup so that Trump is installed for a second term by the Republicans. The Republicans are now completely diabolical They do not appear to believe in democracy or actually really care whether it prevails. Their concern is simply money and power.
We have the Senate run-offs in Georgia still at play. We can only hope that all the demonizing of the election system in Georgia will result in Republicans boycotting the polls. Nothing would give me more pleasure than seeing a cake walk to a Senate majority for the Democrats.
So, our democracy has “dodged a bullet” thus far. Nonetheless, I am holding my breath for December 14 when all the Electoral votes are certified and for January 6, 2021, (the day after the Georgia run-off!) when Congress must meet to formally count the votes and declare official results. It would seem that nothing could be done after December 14 but these evil people have no bottom. We must be ever vigilant.