Loser Trump Undermines Democracy & Grifts Base With Voter Fraud Lies

Trump and his GOP allies are launching an attack on American democracy, sabotaging the Biden transition, and siphoning cash from their base.
Donald Trump returning to the White House, after losing the presidential election while on his golf course – November 7, 2020. (Source: Secret Service)

Donald Trump returning to the White House, after losing the presidential election while on his golf course – November 7, 2020. (Source: Secret Service)

Over the last four years, Donald Trump has seized control of the Republican Party and summarily corrupted and destroyed it, resulting in him experiencing the ignominy of becoming a one-term president who has been beaten at the ballot box. But, while many Americans are celebrating Trump’s resounding electoral defeat, the man himself has fully embraced the approach of a sore loser who is unable to comprehend that the jig is up and they are done.

Americans across the nation turned out to party in the streets in a manner that wouldn’t have been out of place in a country that had just toppled a dictator, as networks called the election after days of ballots being counted. While America is getting ready to welcome a new dawn on January 20th 2021, with nearly 80% of Americans recognizing President-elect Joe Biden as the winner, instead of seeing the writing on the wall and conceding, Trump has spent the last week throwing a tantrum on Twitter. It seems he has decided that, if he can’t lead the US, he’s going to lie repeatedly in an attempt to destroy the nation beyond recognition before anyone else can get their hands on the keys to the White House.

It is important, from the outset, to address the allegations that are being made by the GOP. These aren’t just baseless claims being pushed by Trump and his inner circle. The ludicrous accusations are being spouted by senior members of Congress, such as Mitch McConnell and Lindsey Graham, who are still sycophantically supporting Trump. Using the conspiracy the Republicans have kicked around as justification, Trump’s appointee at the General Services Administration, Emily Murphy, has refused to recognize Biden’s victory, stalling the transition process and denying the President-elect’s team crucial access to the presidential daily briefing, office space, funding, and the ability to begin the screening process for cabinet positions. This poses real national security risks.

Attorney General Bill Barr even re-emerged from wherever he’s been hiding to authorize the Department of Justice to investigate any “substantial allegations” of voter fraud in the 2020 election. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the quiet part out loud and declaring that “there will be a smooth transition to a second Trump administration”.

There’s just one big problem with all of this: the allegations are entirely fabricated. Widespread voter fraud doesn’t exist in the US. It’s a conspiracy theory invented by bitter Republicans who, bafflingly, can’t comprehend why the country would reject a divisive and discriminatory president. Not once have they presented credible evidence in support of the arguments they are making. In fact, when the former Director of National Intelligence, Ric Grenell, was challenged by a journalist over the false claims of voter fraud, he ran with his tail between his legs into a waiting van, instructing an aide to close the door on the reporter without having offered any comprehensible response.

Worse for the GOP, some members of their own party in contested states are calling out the nonsensical ideas. In Georgia, both the Republican Lieutenant Governor, Geoff Duncan, and the Republican Secretary of State, Brad Raffensperger, have dismissed the President’s claims as absurd. Duncan declared that his office has seen no credible examples of voter fraud or disenfranchisement, while Raffensperger defended the robust electoral process. In Wisconsin, the former Republican Governor, Scott Walker, laid bare how bizarre the calls for a recount in states across the country are, making it perfectly clear that there is almost no chance it would have any effect on Joe Biden’s margin of victory. In Pennsylvania, Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) has said Trump should cooperate with the transition.

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When Fox News turns on Trump and the Republican Party, you know that the President and his enablers have crossed a line that should never have been reached. John Roberts, Chief White House Correspondent at Fox News, referred to the President’s comments as the remarks of a losing man who’s desperately trying to cling on to power, while news anchor, Neil Cavuto, cut away from White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany’s press conference moments after it began when she launched into a tirade of unfounded accusations.

Even Trump’s most supportive publication, the New York Post, called his claims “baseless”, as they break from a record of defending his administration through thick and thin. To maintain any credibility and stave off embarrassment, Trump needed his media supporters to stand by his side. Some of the “opinion” hosts on Fox News, however, are regurgitating Trump’s false claims. Although, as we’ve learned over the entirety of this saga in American politics, Republicans are incapable of feeling shame and have no limit to their disgraceful behavior.

Trump wants to tear it all down before the curtains fall on this chapter in history. He wants to do all he can in a damaging, but ultimately futile, attempt to destroy the people’s faith in Democrats, the media, and the electoral process. The Republican Party’s shameful efforts are going to fail (they are already 0-12 in post-election court battles), but, regardless, the President has made clear that he’s going to use all of the tools at his disposal to cause maximum harm, as part of his wider plan to shift America towards authoritarianism. Trump is also using this as an opportunity grift, with a sizable portion of the funds he’s raising currently from supporters going to pay off campaign debt and post-presidency PAC.

This is not Florida 2000. This is not an electoral race that was decided by a small margin with questionable circumstances. Biden has become the President-elect by reversing Trump’s success in 2016, rebuilding the blue wall, and flipping GOP strongholds that haven’t been won by a Democratic presidential candidate in 30 years, all the while taking a lead of over 5 million in the popular vote. When all the votes are counted, there won’t be any debate about who won this contest. It was a decisive victory for the Biden/Harris ticket. But that doesn’t mean the concern about Trump’s action isn’t warranted.

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While Biden is now the President-elect, it can’t be ignored that over 70 million Americans supported Trump and many of them still hang on his every word. Thus, whilst his remarks might be incoherent rambling and ranting, they have consequences. After all, we’ve already seen Trump supporters menacingly gathering outside election offices and counting sites, leaving officials concerned for their staff’s safety. Two QAnon/Trump supporters were arrested after plotting to attack the Philadelphia Convention Center armed and in a truck full of ballots. In at least one instance in Georgia, a poll worker was forced to go into hiding after right-wing sites spread a video falsely accusing them of discarding ballots.

Damage has already been done and, even if Trump eventually concedes and leaves the White House willingly, there will be a whole swathe of people who will forever believe that Biden’s victory was fraudulent. This is a dangerous precedent to set with elections. The Republican Party is throwing out the principle of the peaceful transferal of power that is fundamental to the smooth operation of a democratic country. Do they really want to create an environment where political opponents refuse to accept results that they simply don’t like?

Trump has never believed in the democratic process while he’s been a political candidate and, subsequently, president. When he won the 2016 election, he called foul and falsely claimed that millions of illegal votes had been cast that gave Hillary Clinton a sizeable lead in the popular vote. To this day, four years later, he’s never provided evidence to validate those remarks. The 2020 election was, as Biden has repeatedly stated, a fight for the soul of the nation. These last few days have shown, however, that the fight against Trumpism is far from over. If people thought defeating Trump at the ballot box would eliminate his authoritarian tendencies, they are clearly going to be sorely disappointed.

Biden’s conciliatory tone after his victory is the right approach. America needs to heal and come together, but it can’t do that when the most senior Republican in the country is refusing to recognize the result of the election. Words have consequences and, whether people like to admit it or not, Trump’s statements carry weight with a percentage of the US population. Republicans allowed Donald Trump to destroy their party. If they stay silent and don’t stand up to him now, they seriously risk allowing him to try to destroy faith in democracy.

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Opinion // Donald Trump / Joe Biden / Republican Party