Congratulations, America! Welcome President-Elect and VP-Elect Biden and Harris!

[Rayne and Marcy tag-teaming here: around 4:25 AM ET, Clayton County, GA, home of John Lewis, put Biden in the lead in the New Deep South of Georgia and with it the likely winner of GA and the race.]

~ ~ ~

The wait is finally over. We have a new president-elect.

Congratulations, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris!

Share your sentiments in comments.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-1: Just before 9:00 AM, Biden went up over 5,000 in PA, with the expectation that he will get a disproportionate number of what’s left. It’s done. He won, and still may match Trump’s 306 EVs from 2016.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-2 — 2:45 PM ET —

— Signs and portents

— The FAA established a No-Fly Zone above Joe Biden’s home in Wilmington, Delaware as of mid-afternoon on November 4; this appears to be normal procedure for presidential candidates for a limited period of time. Today the Secret Service ramped up its level of protective detail around Biden, though Biden does not yet have the same level as president-elect or the president.

— People are dancing in the streets in Philadelphia; they’ve been at it since very early this morning.

— A lot of the punditry are complaining about the media’s restraint, refusing to call Pennsylvania for Biden. The threshold appears to be 35,000 votes or 0.05% of  the vote, though, when an automatic recount would be triggered. If the vote count for Biden clears that benchmark then the media will move to call PA and the entire race. (I am not certain about the threshold number or percentage — if you see confirmation somewhere, please share in comments. Thanks.)

— Rick Santorum pleaded for liberals to go easy on the right-wing…

Yeah, no.

— Lindsey Graham is already back on his shit as is McConnell. They must have passed around a memo inside the GOP Senate caucus that austerity is where its at now that they’ve wrecked the future with their goddamned massive tax cut.

— Georgia’s secretary of state (yes, he’s a Republican) has already said a recount will be launched. Except there’s no automatic recount; the candidate has to request one. And the deadline for curing ballots isn’t until this evening. What a partisan crock of shit. This is exactly the crap Stacey Abrams had to face.

— Meanwhile, in Pennsylvania:

Biden 3,311,673 49.5%
Trump 3,298,011 49.3

~drumming fingers~

The wait goes on.

298 replies
  1. bmaz says:

    Wait, who is this dual headed monster on this post?!?

    I think it was already there with AZ and NV, but it sure would be sweet to have GA and PA in the Biden line as well. And it looks likely.

      • Peterr says:

        That presumes facts not in evidence.

        Indeed, all evidence points to the contrary. Trump has several months to burn the entire country down out of pique, frustration, and a desire for revenge on 73+ million voters who conspired against him.

        • BobCon says:

          He may have a lot of scores to settle in the GOP too.

          Don Jr. put out the call yesterday for the GOP to rally behind vote fixing and more fraud fraud, and most Republicans either skipped it or put out tepid statements like Cotton.

          The guy has spent his whole life measuring and testing loyalty. He is not going to be happy about the weasels.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Once Donald gets a teensy bit past the denial stage, he will realize he’s had – but only to date – his first terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. The anger will set and his inner Caligula will come out.

          His lifelong mantra has been get mad, get even, and leave nothing standing. He no better at that than any thing else, but he will be capable of considerable further disfigurement of the USG.

          Little will be permanent – a good epitaph for him – but it will take the first term of a Democratic administration to put right the further damage. Ironically, if Biden accomplishes that, it would be a major achievement.

          • Norskeflamthrower says:

            “…it will take the first term of a Democratic administration to put right the further damage.” Yes, but I think the work may be expedited a bit if the remaining Republican leadership decides to try and save the existing system by attempting to divide the Dems between the “moderates” and progressives and force Biden to “compromise” with Republicans in the Senate. I believe that if they do try to preserve minority rule this way they will fail because Biden owes his job to the progressive majority in his party and he knows it.

          • John Lehman says:

            He’s already played Nero…fiddling as the Covid fires burned…now Caligula…?

            Look out Roger, Rudy and Bill and all other friends and family, watch your backs, did you not see “Good Fellas”?…classic tyranny.

        • Xboxershorts says:

          Trump also has 2 months to destroy documents and electronic records that would incriminate him in a multitude of ways.

            • PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

              NYAG maybe, but Vance I wouldn’t hold my breath for. Anyone know how they share jurisdiction?

          • e.a.f. says:

            if its on computer you can always find it. he is golfing today and who knows he may just go off and do nothing. He’ll blame all those around him for the loss.

            Staff in the American federal service know a new boss is arriving and they may not be following orders as they once did.

            Wonder if Barr will resign quickly.

            there may be FBI staff who know a new sheriff is in town and are getting their files ready for him to have a read of, well V.P. Harris to have a read of. Wonder who she’ll want as A.G. this could be fun.

            Don’t think it will take long for Biden/Harris to undo the damage. They can always get rid of Trump’s appointments and reach into the civil service to find temporary replacements.

            My expectation is the Biden/Harris team will hit the ground running, given Biden was there just 4 years ago. There are still a lot of Obama team players around, who know what they would have to do. They can help. Trump fired all of Obama’s Ambassadors and didn’t replace a lot of them. They could just phone the former Obama Ambassadors and have them go back to their old jobs until Biden/Harris find new ones.

            Wonder what is going to happen to that half built wall?

      • Chris.EL says:

        Rayne and Marcy, an angel for each of our shoulders. Yay!

        Thank you for all your hard work!!!
        It is going to be great to have a pet owner in the white house again!!!
        P.S. wonder what it cost to put up that massive barrier around the white house.

    • CapeCodFisher says:

      Blue wall all the way from Maine to Wisconsin. And the whole east coast except NC, SC and FLA. And the whole west coast.

  2. SuzyQ says:

    Clayton County, GA is the plantation setting in Margaret Mitchell’s ‘Gone with the Wind’. I absolutely love the optics of this!! I grew up not far from there and for some years worked in the Clayton County courthouse doing real estate title abstraction. There are some very fine people there who, I know, are feeling extremely proud and relieved right now, as I am!!

  3. Eureka says:

    Still surreal even though we all knew it was coming and know the rest are coming, too.

    The only time I got nerved was when they were saying (in the middle of this historic momentum) that PA would announce results: no way would they swerve into the special happening.

    We need some new type of warning system that functions like an Amber Alert but for if 45 creates some true emergency that we actually need to react to. I’d love to never hear about him again.

    Thank you to everyone working so hard. Onward, congratulations to American Democracy — the social sum of us — and may we all recover well.

      • dude says:

        I don’t see that happening. It was going to be close all along. My impression is that the Cunningham revelations actually energized the Trump turnout and evangelicals who weren’t necessarily Trumpists. We are still a very Bible Belt / Law & Order state and Republicans do not have a habit of voting split-ticket in my experience. Dems do. The military takes a dim view of Cunningham’s behavior too and that worked well against Cunningham and all other Dems. But I hope I am wrong this time.

          • dude says:

            Yes. My impression is that the vets and the National Guard are inclined to lean toward Trump in the eastern part of the state (where I live). I used to live the western part (grew up there) and it was always Trump-like even before Trump. Strong leaders (strong as in ‘obdurate’) who use simple words are attractive. You may thank Jesse Helms for changing NC into what it has become (IMO). The intersection between the military and evangelicals is very strong in these parts.

        • bmaz says:

          No, probably not. Frankly I am even more depressed that #NC11 voted for Cawthorn over universal decent man Moe Davis.

            • Valerie Klyman-Clark says:

              You are so right. The 11th District includes the city of Asheville and environs which are very blue. I know the district was split weirdly with gerrymandering by the NC GOP, something I thought was remedied by the Supreme Court . . . so I don’t know what goes on.

              I will say there’s a good deal of Trump support in Madison county where we live, replete with a couple of truly eye-popping caravans of Maga-supporters roaring around town in the weeks leading up to the election. So many trucks, so many flags.

              11th District is also Highland/Cashiers, yes? Mark Meadows country. There are definitely a lot of things not right in these parts; it feels like a Jacqueline Susann novel in that part of the world.

              Here’s to, as you said Rayne, that Moe Davis runs again. P.S. At least NC re-elected Roy Cooper and Josh Stein, AG. And God bless Stacey Abrams.

              • dude says:

                Tom Sullivan is an Asheville native and he is well informed about that Cawthorn business. I expected him to have something up at Digby’s site this morning, but I cannot connect with it. I am getting “invalid certificates” warnings from my browers—first time I have seen that.

                • Manuel Gonzalez says:

                  Not been able to visit Digby today, I get this: ‘Warning: Potential Security Risk Alert. Firefox detected a potential security threat and did not continue to If you visit this site, attackers could try to steal information like your passwords, emails, or credit card details.
                  The issue is most likely with the website, and there is nothing you can do to resolve it. You can notify the website’s administrator about the problem”.

      • Tim Cline says:

        I’m live in Durham. In my opinion, his chances (and also those of Cal Cunningham)are the least of the remaining states not your reporting. I hate it, but so it goes. Am actively considering moving overseas. And yes, we have friends in Ireland. 👍👍

      • Chris.EL says:

        Will they invite Trump to Biden’s inauguration?

        Or, better question: can they BAN Trump, et al. from attending??

    • What Constitution? says:

      Excellent! Education is the silver bullet, right? There’s about half of this country that has come to accept the idea that “Patriotic” means open carry of an AK-47 in the Statehouse or running a bus off the road, and that “Freedom” means the absolute right to do whatever is momentarily considered expedient by ME. We’ve maybe got a window where an actual discussion about what it means to have such terms available to us as citizens could actually move the needle. The Carter Foundation gives hope that it might be doable.

  4. harpie says:

    Decision Desk HQ
    GA Presidential Election Results

    1:31 AM · Nov 6, 2020 Trump Margin: +1,267 (-212) Estimated: > 99% votes in
    2:41 AM · Nov 6, 2020 Trump Margin: +665 (-602) Estimated: > 99% votes in
    3:40 AM · Nov 6, 2020 Trump Margin: +463 (-202) Estimated: > 99% votes in
    4:22 AM · Nov 6, 2020 Biden Margin: (+917) Estimated: > 99% votes in
    5:10 AM · Nov 6, 2020 Biden Margin: (+ 1,096) Estimated: > 99% votes in

  5. ukstephen says:

    What about Alaska? I’m Canadian so I know very little about how Presidents get elected in your country, but I read in an Anchorage Paper that Alaska doesn’t even start counting absentee ballots until 7 days after Election Day?

    • Alan Charbonneau says:

      Whatever the absentee ballots turn out to be in Alaska, the in-person votes are 63% Trump & 33% Biden. Trump will win easily, but networks will likely not call the race until absentee ballots are counted, since nearly half the vote is absentee.

    • vicks says:

      When the guy at the board on Fox was asked why they weren’t calling Alaska, he said it was because they didn’t have any people on the ground.
      When it was suggested someone hop on a plane he mumbled something about the distance between Anchorage and any other sizable city.

  6. I Never Lie and am Always Right says:

    Is it too early to discuss the “over/under” number for purposes of betting on the number of pardons that Trump will issue before he leaves office?

    • joel fisher says:

      And what about rules? Does a commutation count as a pardon? And what about clemency issued by President-For-a-Week Pence? Do his count? Suggestion: A pardon is 2 points and a commutation is 1. Call me a conservative, but the early +/- number is 15.

    • John Lehman says:

      “Citizen Kane” or South Dakota Reservation both could apply;
      consummation of a morality tale or a Lakota Victory/Honoring Dance celebration.

  7. Pete T says:

    If – no WHEN – Biden-Harris take AZ, NV, GA, and PA they will have 306 electoral votes. Trump will have 232 electoral votes with NC (not a done deal). Not to mention that any claim of voter fraud would be further buried under reality.

    This is just too wild not to happen.

    2016 is was Trump 306 and Clinton 232.

  8. Alan Charbonneau says:

    I was surprised it wasn’t a landslide for Biden — I thought the polls had it right this time and the record turnout was due more to Dems coming to the polls. In any event, I’ll take it.

    I knew Cornyn would win in Texas, but I was hopeful that Graham would lose in SC especially after Lou Dobbs blasted him.

    But what I still can’t figure out is why Maine voters split the ticket and re-elected Collins. The percentage of the vote she received were very similar to those Biden received. Are they all “concerned” voters in Maine?

      • Ruthie says:

        I grew up in ME and have lots of family there, but haven’t lived there myself in 30 years. When I did, I had nothing but scorn for conservative NH, where I currently live. How times change. Not that Maine was liberal, but IIRC, statewide officeholders were at least mixed.

        Don’t forget that Paul LePage’s election as governor in 2011 predates that of Trump’s for president.

        • Sambucus says:

          I, too, live in NH (21 years now) and I noticed a huge shift to left even since I have been here. All the Sununus are grifters, but John Lynch would STILL be Governor if he hadn’t retired. And we have an all blue Congressional delegation now. Proud of that. Never would have happened in 2000

  9. Pete T says:

    Pivot Monday to GA Senate double runoffs – for “control” of the Senate. Perdue and Loeffler are real pieces of Trump left over garbage who won’t have Trump to hide behind.

    Ought to be a real focused spectacle. I hope Stacey Abrams can continue to work her magic.

    I read on twitter where Marcy suggested Ben Wickler from WI for DNA chairman. Abrams might be a good pick too, but I think she may be destined for other things – but AFTER the run-offs.

    • dude says:

      I believe the state elections board chairman of Georgia gave a press conference yesterday and I caught only part of it on MSNBC. He made it sound like Georgia law is going to invoke a whole raft of recounts and runoffs and regularly scheduled elections in the very near future, some overlapping if I heard correctly. The unspoken fear is voters will be worn out with voting, so turnouts will be lower. He sure made it sound like the election officials over the state will be working double-overtime.

    • Rayne says:

      That’s a good point. Who’s going to push hard for a pardon RTFN? Was Bannon’s inexcusable incitement yesterday a desperate plea for attention before Trump’s decompensation cascades once his narcissistic supply is cut off?

      • Rugger9 says:

        Pardons are all DJT has now for leverage, which given what some of these GOP types have been doing (going to Putin’s Russia on the 4th of July last year and a whole lot of lying) might have value.

        Prosecutions should go on the ones conspiring to interfere, i.e. the Q-Anon dudes caught in PA, the mobs in AZ, the debunked double voter in NV and from this AM the GOP operatives telling their PA voters to submit late ballots, etc. since their crimes are not subject to interpretation of the law or an opinion, but proscribed specifically. DJT won’t pardon the little people either, since they can’t do anything for him now.

        That might also catch Devin Nunes, Rudy, AG Barr, etc. because of the way these individuals went about their “investigations” in order to obstruct / smear DJT’s opponents. The key here is that the evidence needs to be clear.

        Hannity, et al for incitement is a trickier call. They might certainly deserve it, but as far as I’ve seen they have managed to just stay outside the line of criminality as opposed to chucklenuts like Jacob Wohl and his ilk. It should be exposed and Sinclair, Faux, OANN forced to report the results in prime time. I can dream…

        • vvv says:

          “4th of July last year”

          2018, I believe.

          But it does feel like both yesterday and 10 years ago at the same time. ;-D

        • BobCon says:

          The House is going to need to beef up its Ethics Committee.

          There are likely GOP violations that can be chased, but even more critically they have Q non members and staffers who are on the horizon. They will be breaking rules and waiting until they have trashed things to start figuring out how to respond will be a mistake.

    • Rugger9 says:

      Biden leads in AZ (47,052), PA (6662) and GA (1098) as of now according to the respective SoS offices.

      DJT is losing his mind, and already speculation is circling around about how when Pence runs the official count on January 6, the GOP will delay things with useless objections to the counts (since the House has to agree with the Senate, it’s not happening). I am already seeing the GOP rats leaving the so-called Trumptanic because without the presidency, DJT can really do nothing to help anyone.

      It’s also why AG Barr needs to be impeached, to keep the Senate tied up during the lame duck and unable to continue FedSoc court invasion.

      • DrFunguy says:

        Yes, Barr needs impeachment or obstruction charges.
        Can any of the legal professionals offer insight on the likelihood thereof?
        Of course, impeachment is more political and my gut says ‘no way’ particularly with McConnell still in charge…
        A pardon for Barr seems unlikely since he failed to jail Biden, Harris and other enemies of the 45 nation.

        • BobCon says:

          McConnell and the GOP won’t see a Barr impeachment as any more than a rumble strip.

          They took the Trump impeachment in a vaguely serious way for the election year optics, but they will have no problem voting in new rules that let them limit debate to ten minutes and throw it out.

          There may be a value to impeachment if the House wants to force documents to be preserved and get a head start on getting statements, but I would be surprised if Pelosi has the stomach for that.

            • Chris.EL says:

              At a minimum, how about revoking Barr’s license to practice law.

              He’s got a side gig, bag pipe serenades at suitable events…

              • bmaz says:

                On what basis?? You understand that the DC bar has little jurisdiction over DOJ attorneys, right? And what they do have is seldom exercised, right?

                  • e.a.f. says:

                    Part of the problem you have with “going after” those in a previous administration, however, deserving, you waste time. You waste time which could be better used to get your agenda going and helping those who were elected to serve.

                    Here in B.C. when the NDP won, it was sort of how much more money laundering could our province take, there were those who wanted investigations into everything and anything to “clean up” after the other party. However, there was a lot of work to be done. Homelessness, fentanyl addiction, putting a stop to the money laundering, new hospitals, schools, etc. the NDP got on with business. I expect that is what the Democrats will do. Why bother wasting time and energy on guys like Barr when you have COVID to deal with. In the end, what will be better for the people, dealing with covid or going after Barr? People are going to be dying at an incredible rate in the U.S.A. due to COVID. I know we have had a real up turn in Canada and even Vancouver Island has 4 new cases, while all of B.C. has over 500 new cases.
                    Once the evictions start in the U.S.A. there could be thousands of families on the street. Is it not better to deal with that than deal with Barr and some others of his ilk? He’ll be no body now.
                    There may be those who committed real crimes, that’s fine, let the justice system take care of them, but spending time and effort by a new administration on it, not so much. I’m sure there are enough U.S. attorneys who are up for the job.
                    Taking the high road, makes the new administration look better, takes less money and effort, and lets them get on with the agenda.

                    • Rayne says:

                      I’m going to disagree with you. The scale of criminality of the Trump administration demands full investigation because we don’t know not only how much it has cost the U.S., but how much it may continue to cost us if any long-term operations/grifts have been embedded in governance out of public view. Those same operations/grifts may also pose threats to our allies depending how they were set up — one only need look at the obvious attempt in 2019 to use military equipment as a quid pro quo, creating conflict for Ukraine’s president.

                      We don’t know where the money has been going for many programs with absolute certainty; the way in which the Trump administration took money from other budgets to pay for the border wall and establishing tent city concentration camps for asylum seekers is another obvious grift opportunity.

                      And the scale in terms of amount, not just depth and breadth…the US federal budget for 2020 is ~$4.6 trillion dollars; we passed a $2 trillion aid package for COVID, some of which we already know was stolen and without oversight by the Treasury. In comparison, Canada’s budget for 2019 was ~$338 billion. The scale of potential scam which could be buried within US federal taxes requires us to investigate when the risk of loss could be as much as Canada’s entire budget.

                    • DrFunguy says:

                      Kind of off topic but not really.
                      “… the NDP got on with business…” is right, unfortunately. Too much kow-towing to business interests while ignoring the environmental (and racial justice) consequences. I live on Vancouver Island where logging and open net fish farms continue to decimate the wild salmon. Continued logging of primary forests should be considered a war-crime against nature (and humanity). Akin to burning the Library of Congress to heat your dinner… and who needs cariboo anyway? /s
                      They just get in the way of logging and other resource extraction.
                      The NDP campaigned in part on writing an endangered species act for the Province (we’re the only one without such legislation) but once again the political calculus was: green votes < industry votes. The effort was torpedoed in 2019.
                      These are results of the sort of cynical political calculation you are promoting.
                      Cannot the Biden Administration walk and chew gum at the same time?
                      Trump was in part a consequence of Obama looking 'forward, not back'. Bush administration and Wall Street crimes went unpunished and the Republicans came back eager for more.

              • earlofhuntingdon says:

                Roy Cohn kept his until he was broke and virtually on his death bed, that is, until he was no longer useful to any client.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Biden leads in AZ (47,779), PA (8943) and GA (1587) as of now according to the respective SoS offices. The march continues.

        • Rugger9 says:

          Biden leads in AZ (47,779), PA (9681) and GA (1564) as of now according to the respective SoS offices. The march continues. Ralston has NV at +20,452 Biden with 150 k ballots left.

          As for the impeachment, even if McConnell fiddles with the rules that takes time away from ramming judges through.

          • Rugger9 says:

            Biden leads in AZ (47,779), PA (12,325) and GA (1564) as of now according to the respective SoS offices. The march continues.

          • Rugger9 says:

            Biden leads in AZ (47,779), PA (13,345) and GA (1557) as of now according to the respective SoS offices. The march continues.

  10. Vinnie Gambone says:

    On the subject of self flagellation, Rayne, I seem to remember a time when S&M meant never having to say you’re sorry, and all you needed for safe sex was a padded headboard, but that was then….now we have Trump losing. Pleasing in a way hard to describe.
    John Lewis, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, John McCain, Elijah Cummings are clogging in heaven.
    I am so with them. Aye right!

  11. Alan Charbonneau says:

    I seem to remember a time when S&M meant Sales & Marketing. Corporations have to be careful now with their acronyms & abbreviations.

  12. BobCon says:

    This is great. Simply great. I won’t halfway it, not now.

    This opens up a million opportunities to repair our foundations, and Dems can shake off the second guessing and self sabotage and move on in the model of Stacey Abrams and Ben Wikler and Keith Ellison and the NV union organizers and push for networks and grassroots.

    There were plenty of screwups, but they are things that can be learned from, and the good guys need to take a look at all of the fault lines on the other side that can be used to our advantage.

    This is a tremendous day.

  13. BayStateLibrul says:

    I am such a pussy!
    I was so nervous that I had to shut off the TV on numerous occasions.
    Thank God for crossword puzzles, running, walking, and a few pops.
    We spent the past weekend in Sarasota visiting my wife’s sister who had a stroke.
    When we arrived back in Mass, we took a COVID-19 test on Monday.
    The results came back yesterday and we were both negative.
    Cora is the new manager of the Sox and I can now smile?
    We lived in Atlanta for three years.
    So happy that Georgia turned blue.
    I appreciate this site where folks have been encouraging.
    “El que tiene amigos es rico”
    He who has friends is rich.

  14. Ralph H white says:

    As a native Georgia, now living in happily in Mexico, I am humbled by the efforts of my friends and likeminded citizens of our state. Stacey Abrams is amazing and will continue to do wonderful things fort our country in the future. I was born in Valdosta Georgia in 1948. That is about as far south as one can go, until entering Fla. My mother was from the north and raised our family to resist the southern bigotry. Being Catholic and living in Ga. in the 1950’s and 60s we faced a our share, although nothing like the the blacks had to endure. I played basketball from an early age and befriended many blacks through our mutual love of the game. I saw firsthand what they experienced compared to me as far as college opportunities etc. If not for their influence and teaching me the things about the game that I could not learn playing in the segregated highschools my collegiate and professional career would likely never have flourished. I am so happy for them and their families on this day.

  15. PeterS says:

    “Count Every Legal Vote”. This seems to be the Trump supporters’ slogan. I think it would deflate the crazy or misguided right if the Dems appropriated this message and thus emphasised its true meaning. 

    • e.a.f. says:

      what in their minds constitutes a “legal vote” would be my first question.

      Of course here in B.C. one candidate, in the previous election, won by 9 votes which triggers an automatic recount. On the recount she won by 185 votes. recounts don’t always change who the winner is.

  16. harpie says:

    Rick Hasen with a thught about the Senate runoff’s in Georgia:
    [Most likely this has already occurred to Stacey Abrams.]
    9:48 AM · Nov 6, 2020

    “In Georgia, about 23,000 young people were not old enough to vote in the super-close general election this year, but will be eligible to vote in the runoff election for U.S. Senate in January 2021”

    • anti-orange says:

      Plus, I wonder how many likely or former Trump voters will die of Covid or old age or sheer disappointment?

  17. punaise says:

    It’s odd trying to reconcile this feeling of relief with the disgust at the American electorate for failing to administer an overwhelming, stinging rebuke to Trump and McConnell. Dislodging Trump and his cast of miscreants in the WH was the absolute minimum requirement, and the most important of course. But sheeesh, it’s going to get ugly before it can begin to improve.

    As Greg Waldman said at WaPo, the past four years were a test, and America failed.

    • Molly Pitcher says:

      I still cannot wrap my head around the fact that half this country (that’s including the brainwashed juniors too young to vote) think that Trump is anywhere from a great guy to, quite literally, the Second Coming of Christ.

      I have said before that I could understand sprinklings of wannabe autocrats in any given political system. What I can’t understand is the quantity of citizen-sheep who are completely incapable of critical thinking and will follow nut jobs and buy wholesale the insane lies floating around the country now; especially the QAnon crap.

      • MB says:

        Here’s my theory:

        It’s a cult. And therefore operates under “rules” that most of us normals haven’t had life experience with. I strongly recommend reading “The Cult of Trump” by Steven Hassan. He lays it out in clear and politically-understandable terms.

        Anybody that has had any cult experience, whether spiritual or political, and has successfully exited such enclosed spaces and re-integrated with society has been seeing the signs throughout the entire 4 years of Trump’s “reign”. I was involved with a spiritual cult in the mid-70s and the parallels between how the cult leader mesmerizes and cultivates the flock are just eerie.

        Trump has created the world’s largest political cult. Most cults are hidden and off in the margins, wackadoodle groups doing their thing off in a corner and avoiding publicity. But with Trump, the cult phenomenon has come back from the shadows and occupies center stage.

        The ingredients required: a group of scared, naive folks who lack the ability to think critically. That’s a learned skill and public education has been underfunded nationally for oh, a couple or 3 decades. On the leader side, you need someone who connects with the basic emotion of the crowd and plays to them. I think the cultic studies field, which is now just a very small slice of academia, is about to experience a growth spurt. The general public badly needs education in cultic dynamics, it’s here whether we like it or not.

      • Hika says:

        About a third (+/-) of people in most places around the world are born authoritarian supporters. Check out “The Authoritarians” by Bob Altermeyer. https://the authoritarians. org/

      • American Abroad says:

        To get a quick understanding of 45’s followers, I can’t recommend enough Jeff Shartlet’s latest piece in Vanity Fair. And if you have some extra time, check out the limited series on Netflix – The Family – based on his book. It was eye-opening for me. I felt like the Vanity Fair article gave me a view no other reporting has.

        • e.a.f. says:

          why not a larger vote against Trump? You do wonder, but in my opinion some of it starts back with the American MSM. They don’t do their job. Some carry people like Santorium and others. Yikes. They don’t cover for any length of time serious issues in the U.S.A and when they do it comes up for a cycle, drops off the radar never to be seen again. People simply aren’t informed. Some times it takes the MSM forever to get their act together. i.e. concentration camps for children. It was on blogs before the MSM ever caught up with it. Then it was over.

          When there are riots following the murder of a person of colour, you see the MSM covering the riots, but when the riots stop so does the coverage. You don’t see the other stuff, how things are so very bad in some areas of the U.S.A. You don’t see small documentaries on MAIN stream t.v. or part of the news. read about it on various blogs and articles. You don’t see big time politicians doing their bit on the issues. there is never a time to educate the American public about how bad it really is out there so how can you get people to change.

          Then there is the no small problem of state organizations and large cities not working between election cycles. What effects people in their day to day lives happens in small towns and cities and counties. That is where the work starts.
          The one person I’ve seen do some real hard work and have a system, is Ms. Abrams. Every American state needs some one like her to work full time keeping the Demcratic party live and moving it forward, from small town elections to the state level. that is how you effect change. Even I figured out the real name of the game in the U.S.A. I Gerry mandering and voter suppression.

          Some people will never change their minds, forget them, but there are millions whose minds can be changed. those are the ones you need to identify and work with.

          The African American vote when motivated has gotten out and voted for Democrats. But really what have they ever really gotten out of it. Did they get better schools and clinic in their neighbourhoods? Was there better housing? When I look at the U.S.A. not much has changed since I was a kid. Laws have been passed, but I’m sure about as many men of colour are being shot by the police today as they were back in the 1950s and 60s. Democrats come to office but not much changes.

          when you look at the white population, for the working poor have things gotten better for them under a Democratic administration? didn’t with Bill Clinton. As I recall he passed some anit welfare legislation which enabled employers to force people to work for min, wages while children were left un attended at home because their mom was forced to work. How did that turn out? They got no further ahead, so when Trump came along and promised them some different they went for it. Now he didn’t deliver but he did have a good strategy, blamed others–Mexicans, Latin Americans, Muslims, Canada and distracted them. it was the old Roman bread and circus things and he didn’t even have to provide bread, just the circus.

          Haven’t seen much done for the poor or working class in the U.S.A. since LBJ. Obama had to deal of course with a Republican Senate but at one point if I’m not mistaken the Senate was Democratic and they weren’t much help to him at that time.

          Populism works. Just ask dictators. Hitler made good use of it and so has Trump. If you want people to stop voting against their own interests you have to spend a little time explaining things. that hasn’t happened. l LeBron James did a lot of work. Now the trick is to keep him working on this and recruit a lot of other star athletes who young people will listen to. When he retires team with Stacey Abrams.

  18. Tracy Lynn says:

    I so want this to be over with! But I am curious: Where is the information coming from? 538 still has Biden at 253. So does CNN. AP has him at 264.

      • bmaz says:

        I’ve not been kidding, AZ has been in the Biden category from the get go. Nice of the AP to catch up.

        And, by the way, Nevada has been there for a while too. The gig is long up for Trump, but the national media wants to wrap a bow on PA or GA, instead of admitting the obvious.

  19. Molly Pitcher says:

    So, does Stacy Abrams take a role in Biden’s administration, and if so what, or does she stay home and run for Governor or……?

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Depends on who controls the Senate, which we won’t know until mid-January. Also depends on how much rebuilding and reform Biden has a stomach for: there’s no lack of need for it.

      I doubt Moscow Mitch would proceed on her nomination, not without a big concession from Biden. But I don’t think the rank and file will be very fond of concessions just now, not with McConnell promising to disrupt Biden more than he did Obama.

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        I’m just wondering where she can do the most good both for her future political life and for Georgia and the country. Her ground work is making Biden’s apparent success in GA and the run-off for two Senate seats possible.

        Imagine what she could do as head of the Democratic party ? But that wouldn’t help her personal political future.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Barring a handful of top posts, she could probably name her ticket. Top post at HUD or HHS, head of Civil Rights division at DoJ?

      • harpie says:

        Oh, we’ve done away with advise and consent…just slap an “Acting” in front of the title and you’re good to go…no need to show up and answer questions at Congressional Hearings, either…

          • harpie says:

            That’s why Dems are ALWAYS and FOREVER
            digging ourselves out of PITS the GOP has dug.

            I don’t know the answer, but someday we’re going to have to fight fire with fire.

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            I’m hoping he’s not given to looking forward, not back, or to pre-conceding major points before negotiations start, then finding that Lucy has yanked the football again before he gets anything in exchange.

  20. Peterr says:

    Another Ray Charles song seems appropriate this morning . . . especially this part:

    Ray: . . . Now baby, listen baby, don’t you treat me this way
    Cause I’ll be back on my feet some day
    Raylettes: Don’t care if you do, cause it’s understood
    You ain’t got no money, you just a no good

    In my head, I’m imaging an enormous chorus of women surrounding the unclimbable fence at the White House, singing in 8 part harmony.

    • Rugger9 says:

      This result is important because IIRC Senator Kelly is seated now as a consequence of the special election, not in January.

      That means 48-48 until the GA Senate races are decided.

      • Peterr says:

        No. It means the Senate is 52-48 instead of 53-47 until January, as the only person who leaves is McSally.

        January is when the new Congress is seated, and two of those seats will start out vacant. With Alaska and NC yet to be called, I think it’s a decent chance it will start out 50-48, with McConnell still in control until after the GA races are decided.

        • Alan Charbonneau says:

          McSally’s worshipping of Trump led to AZ having two blue senators. If Trump had political skill and was not insane, Jeff Flake would still be there and not Sinema.

          Of course, the GOP didn’t learn their lesson and the governor appoints someone who already lost to a democrat to lose to another democrat. That’d be like Hillary running this year!

          Trump continually attacked McCain and that didn’t help him in the AZ general election. Next time someone mentions Trump’s great political instincts (unlikely to happen soon), remind them of AZ.

  21. earlofhuntingdon says:

    As for Donald refusing to leave on January 20th, he should remember that what goes around, comes around. He and his son-in-law made/make a living ejecting poor people from houses they can no longer afford. I don’t think Biden will have a problem evicting a criminal trespasser.

    Trump has pissed off the Secret Service, insulting and demeaning it, randomly changing his schedule and putting avoidable pressure on it, and blithely infecting its agents with Covid. It seems unlikely to hesitate in escorting Donald from the building. Same with the military, which Trump has pissed off even more. All Donny has left is the thousands of fat, bearded, genetically perfect, armed gangs in the hinterland, and they have little sway inside the Beltway.

    The bigger issue is how much more damage Trump will attempt before he leaves, and who goes along with it. The good news is that a lot of the people who would make such damage happen will now be more worried about protecting their own backsides than in implementing their Leader’s will.

  22. Norskeflamthrower says:

    It looks like Digby has been hacked. Anyone else getting hacker warnings when trying to access Hullabaloo?

    • drouse says:

      I don’t think her site was hacked. The initial error message I got going there referenced a bad certificate. I think its likely that whomever provides hosting for her didn’t renew something in a timely manner.

      • Norskeflamthrower says:

        I sure hope you’re right but I didn’t get the “bad certificate” notice, I got hacker warnings from both Google Chrome and Firefox. But Digby’s got a feature up on Alternet.

      • vvv says:

        “We were not hacked
        Published by digby on November 6, 2020
        Just a technical problem. During the most important political week in four years. No biggie.
        A few new posts below that didn’t make it before the crash…We’ll be back to our usual schedule tomorrow.”

        She did 6 posts today. (CST)

  23. harpie says:

    Apparently, Rick Santorum and his GOPpals are SAD!:

    SANTORUM: Democrats need to give Republicans, including Trump, time and space to work through their feelings about losing

    Some recent history:
    1] 7:36 PM · Sep 18, 2020

    BREAKING: Supreme Court says Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died of metastatic pancreatic cancer at age 87.

    2] 10:10 AM · Sep 19, 2020

    [email protected] We were put in this position of power and importance to make decisions for the people who so proudly elected us, the most important of which has long been considered to be the selection of United States Supreme Court Justices. We have this obligation, without delay!

    So, yeah…GOP? [And I mean this in the nicest possible way]: FVCK your feelings.

      • BobCon says:

        CNN needs to dump him, of course.

        But even more important, CNN needs to dump the execs who think the wet stupid doughball adds anything to their broadcasts. The basic model at CNN of shouty know-nothings is broken, not only from a news perspective but from a revenue perspective — there are huge opportunity costs for so much airtime for chowderheads.

    • P J Evans says:

      They’ve had three days – that’s more than they allowed RBG.
      I recall Trmp trying to claim authority before he was sworn in, so they can stuff it.

  24. rosalind says:

    Q: for the legal folk – once Biden starts receiving the Intelligence briefings, if he learns something critical that Trump is hiding from the public, is he allowed to publicly talk about it?

    • Peterr says:

      NAL, but the answer is no. He remains bound by all the laws and rules about classified information.

      Note: Biden has already been getting intelligence briefings. They are given to the major party nominees after their respective conventions, as a routine transition matter so that whoever wins in Nov is up to speed well before Jan 20.

  25. PeterS says:

    Newt Gingrich is on Fox News, explaining that it’s up to the Dems to prove there WASN’T fraud, lol. To be fair, the Fox anchors pushed back, albeit gently.

  26. civil says:

    Huge shout out to Stacey Abrams and others working on voting rights in GA. Now we have to work on turning out the vote for the Jan. special election for GA Senators. If we can’t flip the Senate, we can expect McConnell to be the same roadblock for Biden that he was for Obama, maybe worse.

  27. Savage Librarian says:


    Bunker boy inside his fort
    misconstrues the term “escort,”
    Today it doesn’t mean cavort,
    or who a sailor might find in port.

    His engine’s down more than a quart,
    And that was from the last report,
    Scanning through the next mail sort,
    We brace for Mr. Spoil Sport.

    Yet there’s nothing left to distort,
    even after his day in court.
    Twist and turn and then contort,
    We’re not something to abort.

    Or, to spell it out in short,
    there’s not a line that he can snort,
    or oligarchs to help extort,
    The term today just means to thwart.

    Buh Bye!

      • Chris.EL says:

        Sadly, sadly, sadly folks, we have not heard the last from Donald Trump.

        His cult followers will carry on; his adult children think they are entitled to carry on, etc.

        I’d like to see his re-election funds AUDITED.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if Trump has already formed a re-election fund for 2024!!!!!

        It is too easy a source of cash flow. Don’t you think?

        A sign Trump has given up this election may be when he starts golfing again.

  28. Raven Eye says:

    What price victory?

    Assuming the count eventually shows that Biden won on Tuesday, and following that there will be some kind of resolution of the lawsuits and recounts; has there been much of a national political shift?? I’m waiting to be convinced.

    The thing that got “done” was getting a sociopath out of the White House. Has the national political needle moved to the left? No large movement so far. If we look at Maine and NE-2, those two locales seemed satisfied to purge the White House while keeping Collins and Bacon in office. True conservatives are happy with what they got the past four years but many knew that another four would be too destructive.

    Mitch? Mitch would have preferred a Republican President this time and he regrets losing seats, but there are two sides to his agenda. Given a ranting, aggressively ignorant RINO President, Mitch made hay whilst he could. It was like the “Happy Time” for the western Atlantic U-Boats. Now, shifting from offense to defense, Mitch will still control much of the game.

    Which brings up Georgia. For the Georgia senate races, Democrats are counting on wishes becoming reality. There may be some hope, but in the House races (as of this morning) no seats were flipped. Status quo. Throw “that” bum out, but keep things stable in our part of the House.

    But fasten your seatbelts: Big money is coming to Georgia. My guess is that the bean-counters for the candidate campaign funds and PACs are already working on the numbers, figuring out their accounts payable, nailing down expected future expenses, and deciding on how much of a cushion should be held back. After that, send the cash to Georgia. The big money and dark money PACs are terrified of the prospect of the White House and Congress under Democratic (small and large “d”) control, so count on the usual suspects opening their wallets again.

    The Democrats need to get smarter faster — faster as in “today”. Socialism as a pejorative has new life, even if 99% of the people who say they are against socialism can’t tell you what socialism is. They think that ACA, Medicare-for-all, etc. is proof of socialism. They totally miss the fact (or have become convinced) that getting long term health care costs down and outcomes up makes the U.S. more competitive in the World’s marketplaces. Democratic messaging in Georgia will be critical.

    And why is a group of senior Republicans still backing Trump — supporting his election fraud ravings? Because they want to turn him loose in Georgia (which might also distract him from destroying the federal government). Trump on a rampage in Georgia will make Sherman look like a military high school cadet.

    Meanwhile, Trump is planning on 2024. He can keep his family on the campaign payroll (he likes spending money, but LOVES spending other peoples’ money), run around the world with Secret Service protection, and blab all he knows. He will be greeted around the country by smaller, but more dedicated crowds. Expect more (but smaller) ISIS-like displays of pickups with large flags. And the vigilante / militia / white terrorist / Oath Keeper groups will be like pigs in poop, rolling in conspiracy theories.

    Trump on the loose is scary. I’m sure the IC is starting (or continuing) a damage assessment in the wake of the Trump administration. Think of all those appointees who have TS and TS/SCI clearances. Too much has been compromised already, but much can still be divulged by a “slip” of a (greased) tongue.

    The pressure on Democrats can only increase the next two years. Are they up to the challenge?

    • BobCon says:

      One thing I hope people understand is that having Trump throwing bombs starting in 2021 is potentially bad news for the GOP.

      If he keeps up the obese turtle act, or if he has serious legal trouble, there will be a split in the party between people who want to move on and people who think there is an advantage to being a lickspittle.

      The problem is that Trump has had a very mixed record as an endorser — he hates to campaign for anyone but himself. He is going to play games with anyone who tries to assume his mantle, treating them like Apprentice contestants who can be berated in public for failing to bow correctly. His magic doesn’t transfer easily.

      There is no way he makes it to 78 to run again. But he is capable of sucking oxygen from any gathering of GOP contenders until then.

      The GOP needs him gone. They have no easy answer for how to do that.

      • earlofhuntingdon says:

        There is no way he makes it to 78 to run again. But he is capable of sucking oxygen from any gathering of GOP contenders until then.

        Not with his co-morbidities and the probability of being engulfed by state prosecutions, private litigation, and potential for bankruptcy, owing to the unlikely prospect that DB or any other lender will refinance his hundreds of millions of debts, much of it personal.

        Trump needs the money from running. He needs the attention even more.

        • BobCon says:

          All he has left is noise soon, and people should not jump to conclusions about that being some kind of great thing for the GOP. How do Ted Cruz or Ron DeSantis establish themselves as valid leaders if the press only wants to ask them what they think about Trump’s press conference in Moscow claiming he found evidence of Hillary Clinton’s affair with Obama?

    • Epicurus says:

      Trump may be eyeing 2024 but Melania surely isn’t. She won’t be wanting to go through that again. And he needs her. Trump just needs a platform and he will soon realize he has it as a former President. Better than being President for his purposes. He will be second guesser extraordinaire/ Monday morning QB until he dies.

      All the Cassiuses and Cascas left among the Republican Senators that are already eyeing 2024 with their lean and hungry looks just have to remind Trump and the population that he lost in 2020. The magic has gone.

      • Raven Eye says:

        I hadn’t considered the “M” factor. Methinks Melania has fairly good survival instincts, but not as reptilian as Donald’s. Looking at Trump’s first two sons, would a mother want her son to turn out like they did?

        I wouldn’t be surprised if by the end of the school year she decamped with Barron, perhaps to a “vacation” residence in some place like Switzerland. Trump needs to keep her happy, and that probably involves providing some safe assets. Withdrawal from the public gaze would be a relief.

      • P J Evans says:

        I think Sinclair and OANN will be the only places that give him a platform; maybe Twitter – but he might need a new account, since he turned his personal account into the official one.

    • iamsmall says:

      Are you sure? Because I think he’s going to have to give some DNA to his rape case and NY state would like a word with him about some tax fraud and money laundering. Campaigning from Rikers can be very difficult.

  29. mass interest says:

    Thanks, Raven Eye, for the reality check. You’ve covered my concerns and brought up others.

    RE are the Dems up to it? I fear not, especially with Pelosi and Schumer still in place and Pelosi threatening to run again in 2022.

    • BobCon says:

      Think about it this way — Pelosi is in a much weaker position as a decider next year than she was in 2019. When Biden’s White House sets an agenda, she is not in a position to do her usual foot dragging.

      The pressure is off her to be the public face of the party, which she clearly dislikes, and she can get back to her strength, which is counting votes and wrangling the mechanics of the House.

      Ideally, we would have a Speaker who is better at building up Congress as a coequal institution in the government. But we may get that turnover this year, and in the meantime, she is focusing on what she does well.

      • mass interest says:

        Thank you for the sanity check and your good points.

        I’m finding it challenging this week to keep rational thoughts at the forefront. Interestingly, the impeachment shitshow keeps coming back to haunt, and am not entirely convinced that this presidential election is in the bag.

        Thanks to all here – you’re contributing to the modicum of linear thought to which I’m clinging!

  30. Hika says:

    Yay! I’ve just enjoyed a triple of dark rum with ginger beer to celebrate Georgia and Pennsylvania leaving large boot prints on Trump’s a55. Given how in love with his 2016 EC map Trump was, I’d love to see a few court rooms have Biden’s EC map on a wall where Trump can view it at length while fending off questions about why he paid consulting fees to an employee who happens to be his daughter and other curiosities in his tax affairs.
    I thought I might just note here that I recently voted in a country 8,000 miles away where I am a life long citizen and inhabitant. Where I am, if your eyesight and manual dexterity are up to it, you get a paper ballot and a pencil. This year, due to Covid, the pencils were not on a string at the booth but were handed out at the door and dropped into a box for cleansing before being handed on to subsequent voters (this should have been the standard all along regardless of Covid, but we’ve learned the lesson again). And we knew the election results on the night, but it wasn’t that big a deal.
    Now, I don’t think American pollsters are uniquely inept, so when the poll margins keep falling one way and not the other, some digging is needed. I noted that Lindsey Graham was leading Harrison by 2 to 3% in the late, better rated polls at 538. Harrison appears to have got about 44% after polling 44 to 46%. Graham was polling 46 to 49% in those same polls but seems to have netted 54.5% of the vote. So close to bang on for Harrison but 5 to 7% short on Graham. Hmmm. Every single undecided voter broke for Graham. I’m suspicious when I see numbers like that without a compelling narrative (I didn’t see any stories about Harrison drowning puppies the day before election day). So, I looked up how SC does its voting. They use touch screen machines that give the voter a bar code to scan into another machine. OK. I’m not saying the machines are rigged, but when was the last time voting on such machines resulted in an unexpectedly good outcome for a Democratic candidate? Comp.Sci people have warned for years that these systems are vulnerable to fiddling and even if they do provide an accurate result, the suspicion of fiddling destroys democratic legitimacy for people elected using such systems. Nothing builds confidence in a result more than having physical ballots (usually paper) counted in the presence of representatives of all parties. Electronic voting just doesn’t do that for anyone.

    SC bought voting machines that were more expensive and less safe than alternatives. Why?
    https://www.[link break]thestate.[link break]com/news/politics-government/election/article246806162.html

    Why electronic voting is (still) a bad idea:
    https://www.[link break]youtube.[link break]com/watch?v=LkH2r-sNjQs

    • Alan Charbonneau says:

      The same machines were used in Texas and Georgia.
      A human-readable paper ballot is printed out along with a scannable section. They allow you to review your choices before printing out a ballot. I have confidence in them.

      The old punch card (hanging chad, anyone) were also electronic voting, they simply added the step of punching through the card. Also, remember the “butterfly ballot” in Florida, 2000? It supposedly confused lots of voters. There was no confusion on my computer screen when I reviewed my choices before printing the scannable ballot.

  31. Norskeflamthrower says:

    I sure hope you’re right but I didn’t get the “bad certificate” notice, I got hacker warnings from both Google Chrome and Firefox. But Digby’s got a feature up on Alternet.

  32. John Lehman says:

    of relief….. hopefully no “super Brooks Brothers suits” plotting in the shadows…
    Didn’t the Brooks Brother clothing company go belly up?

  33. @pwrchip says:

    I usually don’t comment, but this IS a very special occasion not ONLY for America but for the World as well. But until Trump concedes we’ll have turmoil unfortunately. I just want to thank Marcy, other writers, monitors and her staff for always dissecting news for us which is the Q&A in clarity and understanding the world around us. Plus, thanks to all the brilliant insight coming from the commentators which is the icing for me. I thank you all and BE SAFE.

    • Marinela says:

      If Trump doesn’t concede, it is on him. I really don’t care that he does or he doesn’t.
      Biden wins and that’s that.
      Giving Trump the power on the concede narrative and worrying about it, is Trump controlling this narrative and us buying in it.
      His base is going to stay the same if he concedes or if he doesn’t.

  34. graham firchlis says:

    Premature congratulations to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. Still hesitant, my chad scars are twitching, but very likely a Democratic win.

    Hearty congratulations also to DCCC Chair Cheri Bustos and Speaker Pelosi for winning the House, and to DSCC Chair Catherine Cortez Masto, Chuck Schumer and Dick Durbin for keeping the Senate in play, all in the face of massive voter suppression from the Radical Right and unrelenting messaging damage from the PurityLeft. As much as could possibly be done, given the bilateral oppositional efforts.

    House Democratic caucus conference this morning was as reportedly the most bitter since Gingrich, a near total majority openly and vociferously placing blame for lost seats squarely where it belongs, the grossly imprudent and counterproductive messaging from the Squad and some others that frightened conservative voters.

    I include Bernie Sanders in that bunch, by far the most destructive individual force limiting Democratic Party electoral success for two presidential elections in row and, perforce, inhibiting America’s sole pathway for progressive advance. I pray he retires, the sooner the better.

    Moving legislation requires allies. The Squad instead created enemies in thier own caucus, and will find it near impossible to find co-sponsor support outside their small clique. The likelihood of significant progressive legislation passing the House is greatly diminished as a result of thier antics.

    • bmaz says:

      Since you are ejaculating wildly, maybe “premature” is appropriate. You are going to slobber over Schumer and Durbin, but willingly and fully shit on Sanders? What in the is world is wrong with you?

      • graham firchlis says:

        What of note has Bernie Sanders accomplished in public office? All I see is his re-election.

        He’s a consumate showman, has the.moves and the patter down cold, and clearly speaks his truth. But his overly ambitious runs at the presidency have had disasterous effect, utterly counterproductive to the progressive, communitarian society you and I seek.

        Hillary’s loss was a squeaker, should have been a landslide win. Lots of reasons all stacked up, almost all out of the reach of the American Left. But supporting Sanders and his claims of Clinton Corrupt!!!! amplified and reinforced a major portion of the VRWC propaganda.

        Simultaneously, his proud and loud association with the established scareword Socialism and his maniacal claims of FREE!!! this and FREE!!! that alienated many in the middle.

        You see lovable goodness. Too many others see a wildeyed commie coming to dismantle the military and defund the police, a conman promising FREE!!! so he can pick thier pockets. The net effect was votes lost, not gained.

        A lot of things cost Hillary voter support, not just Bernie. But if he had tempered his rhetoric, stayed out of the 2016 race, offered unequivocal support from the start and educated his admirers on the benefits of realpolitik, we would now be celebrating Hillary Clinton’s re-election. Instead we got Trump.

        If he had stayed out this time and been supportive, Biden wouldn’t have had to simultaneously run away from the FarFarLeft while trying to reassure the Practical Left and assuage the fears of the middle. Too much stradle, caused by Bernie and the Left.

        I got no use for the guy.

          • graham firchlis says:

            Simple question: What concrete progressive advancement has Bernie Sanders accomplished?

            I hear crickets.

            • fubar jack says:

              Bernie and others are are pulling (unwillingly),
              the Democratic party establishment to the left.
              Although you may not like it , it is profoundly important! The rise of Trumpism is in part a reaction to the corporate complexion of a Democratic Party that does not reflect the needs of the voters they need to govern…

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          Nowhere in Western Europe would Bernie be considered a socialist, let alone a Communist. Americans’ view of the political spectrum has been constricted almost beyond repair by the incessant, harsh catechism of extreme capitalism.

          It’s as if Hoover still runs the FBI, Dulles runs State, LeMay the Air Force, and it’s Eisenhower on the golf course. That’s by design. Witness the career and writing of Samuel P. Huntington, especially his post-Nixon work on how to avoid an “excess of democracy” for David Rockefeller’s Trilateral Commission.

          • graham firchlis says:

            But we aren’t in Europe. We have to work with what we have, in the context that constrains us. Hard here for the Left, made harder still by undercutting our only hope for positive change.

            • skua says:

              Your analysis closely parallels that expressed by John Bolton.

              Here is another analysis: AOC etc, by flying the flag for progressive change, kept the way open for those disgusted by G.W., Cheney and Trump to remain engaged in mainstream politics.
              Their obvious alternative was to decide that the system was irrepairably broken and voting for Trump would hasten its inevitable demise.

            • Eureka says:

              graham, your assumptions throughout are a hot mess. This one about “the context that constrains us” is the worst, carted implicitly all over this page and other instances. And don’t bother with some bullshit over how here, you are talking about how we are not Europe. You use — indeed, open with — the same chains regarding the nature of GOP attack ads demanding moar centrism. (And on that point, it just might be the case that recruiting fear and creating aversion or other negative emotional valence might be specifically most effective against a so-called centrist candidate who doesn’t particularly stand for anything, and so has not much basis of social appeal, has no chance of being liked more than feared by association with boogymen. You absolutely do NOT know that a candidate being “more left” would be the crucial source of weakness in a contest where they were being ~’tarred by a broad brush’ or however you put it below. It’s as or more likely the case that that brush is the exact tool that works best on a stand-for-not-much centrist. Unidimensionality on this left-right slider bar is failing you. And us, for that matter.)

              The GOP is wholly unconstrained, ratcheting away. I could dispatch with this “argument” by noting that _your_ framing would have us worse off than the recapitulation of the ‘Third Reich kinda way’* that we are now, and fast. “Wholly” is barely hyperbole given the quality of their “incrementalism” of the past several years. “I could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue …” became more roadmap than metaphor.

              *with some folie a deuxsignificant fraction of the Union thrown in

          • earlofhuntingdon says:

            That’s where the language comes from. But it’s been bent out of shape by the American Neoliberal catechism. It reduces the ideas to generic epithets, devoid of meaning except as an indication of tribal affiliation. Republicans are actively aided by Democrats’ unwillingness to offer a credible alternative to Republican policies. The Dems are now farther right than Eisenhower’s Republicans.

            • John Lehman says:

              “ The Dems are now farther right than Eisenhower’s Republicans.”

              -Right we could sure use some infrastructure projects equal to Ike’s Interstate Highway system.

            • graham firchlis says:

              And so it is.

              Adopting the Socialist mantle adds a huge, perhaps overwhelming burden, however linguistic corruption has made it so, for no good apparent reason.

              You’re aware of the power of words. Court packing is a negative, a loser. Court expansion is a positive. Court reform can also sell. Socialism cannot, it only serves to frighten. Leave it alone. Find a reassuring affiliation.

              The comparison with Eisenhower Republicans is absurd. Cleansed of a few BlueDogs, the current Democratic congressional caucus is the most progressive ever assembled.

              To move government Leftward, the Left will have to organize a movement to elect more progressive lawmakers. Be the change you wish to see.

            • Rayne says:

              I wouldn’t respond to firchlis here — he’s arguing in bad faith.

              First he bashes The Squad who are the progressive lawmakers Democrats are choosing to change Congress, then he lectures that “the Left will have to organize a movement to elect more progressive lawmakers.”

              Yeah…I think the problem he’s having isn’t new lawmakers’ progressivism. Not the first time I’ve caught a whiff of this, either.

              • John Lehman says:

                Seems to be playing his own incoherent nebulous mind game fantasies rather than exploring truth for the common good.

    • PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

      I think the Dems would be better served by embracing popular progressive policies that most of the country endorse, and then deliver, rather than playing at republican-lite and acting so scared of their own shadows that they get stomped all over by Republicans.

      Trump’s share of the Republican vote increased this time around, the strategy of trying to peel off Republicans who didn’t like Trump failed. The Republicans came home, as they always have.

      And for all that messaging, time, and money chasing the mythical wavering right leaning demographic? The national campaigns by and large lost votes of Hispanic communities that they ignored. I’m not just talking about grizzled reactionary Cubans in miami, but all over the country.

      Deliver on popular policy, show your base you are willing to fight when needed, invest in your ground game, and run good candidates to win. Even with the massive racist handicaps of voter suppression, as demonstrated by Stacey Abrams.

      Edit: I remember this troll, congrats you tricked me out of five minutes of my life

    • Rayne says:

      You are as out of sync with the Democratic base as Clyburn and the rest of the old school centrists.

      I’ll let Aidan Smith spell it out with a roll call of the House Dems who lost reelection in 2020:

      – Donna Shalala, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Joe Cunningham, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Xochitl Torres Small, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Abby Finkenauer, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Kendra Horn, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Collin Peterson, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Joe Cunningham, an opponent of Medicare for All and defunding the police.

      – Debbie Murcasel Powell, who once spoke in favor of Medicare for All but abandoned support for the issue, and also an opponent of defunding the police.

      – Max Rose, who ran hard to the right on matters of policing, disparaged his progressive colleagues (Ocasio-Cortez and Omar in particular), and was still called a “cop hater” and lost.

      You can catch the rest of his thread at this link:

      Democrats who played it safe and walked the centrist line were shown the door. Don’t like the Medicare for All message? Then figure out why red states expanded Medicare and play to that message. It’s not the Democrats’ leftist platform which is chasing away voters when more conservative states like Florida vote for $15 minimum wage which is part of Biden-Harris platform.

      That’s the true problem: the goddamned inability to develop effective messaging quickly, framing in a GOP-proof fashion.

      Go back and re-read Ted Kennedy’s 1980 concession speech. That outlined the very core of the Democratic Party’s ideology, then and now — it’s unchanged. And then compare the bullshit everyone of the centrists has deployed against that speech. They suck and they deserved to lose.

      And fuck Cheri Bustos in particular on women’s reproductive rights. Dan Lipinski lost in the primary to a Democrat who got it, who went on to win that seat no thanks to Bustos.

      EDIT: Just remembered that the centrist Democrats above for the most part were late to the party supporting Trump’s impeachment. Fuck them for their ethical failure, worrying more about their seat than doing the right thing.

      • graham firchlis says:

        Not sure I follow the argument. They all ran Rightward from the FarLeft of the Party, as you say to get votes. Are you claiming if they’d run Left they’d have gotten more votes? In those districts? Don’t believe that’s plausable.

        They lost to candidates who ran much, much farther Right. The Dems couldn’t escape being tarred by a broad brush, in districts where their hold was already tenuous. In these districts, more Left would have only meant a bigger loss.

        EDIT: Keeping their seats is what every aspirational office holder must do, or they’ll soon have none to hold. Hardly a fault. Castigation for doing the right thing albeit with insufficient alacrity also seems overly harsh.

        • Rayne says:

          You’re a victim of the propaganda which says The Squad is “FarLeft of the Party.” Except its leader, AOC, interned with Ted Kennedy and has promoted absolutely nothing which wasn’t the 1980 Democratic Party.

          If anything, that “FarLeft” Squad is regressive, reverting to the Democratic Party’s commitment to economic democracy and social justice.

          The centrist Dems lost to Republicans because they ran as Republican-lite. They failed to offer a different vision, failed to articulate something better. And I will bet that these centrists lost sight of universal ethics like fairness when they were pitching their case for re-election.

          Good gravy, just look at Max Rose’s NY-11 district which was Lean Dem and voted for Democrats most of the last 60 years. And in this pandemic? Simply shouldn’t have lost.

          • graham firchlis says:

            AOC and Ted Kennedy is apropos of what exactly? Proof she is not to the Left?

            Again you propose that the centrist Dems lost because they failed to hew to the Left. The voters had their choices. They wanted hard Right policy. Much of the participatory electorate does.

            Your contention is simply counter to the reality before us. To change such outcomes to a new reality, the Left needs to step up and aggregate enough support to push more progressive candidates through a primary and the general. Waiting for others isn’t working, is it?

            Looked at NC11. Ashville and surrounds, been there multiple times, pretty country. Also pretty Rightwing, and bigoted. Last incumbent was Mark Meadows, before him a BlueDog good old boy jock. Whoever had it lean Dem was dreaming, unless the Dem was a BlueDog Macho smoothtalking bigot.

            Your friend Moe didn’t stand a chance.

            • Rayne says:

              You’re not even able to make the case for centrist policies, only reflexively able to bash ‘the left’.

              As for NC-11: they voted for Cawthorn. That should tell you there is something beyond fucked up going on in that district. It has nothing to do with Moe Davis’ quality as a candidate when the electorate chose a snot-nosed wannabe Nazi after voting for a poorly-qualified corrupt hack like Mark Meadows. They aren’t voting for rational policies. If you can’t see that you really need to take some time out.

              Not worth my time any longer.

              • graham firchlis says:

                Of course they aren’t voting for rational policy. The majority clearly just want a bigot. Before Meadows it was Heath Schuler BlueDog for 3 terms, before him was an Old South Republican for 8 terms. And it wasn’t Lean Left, Cook had it at R+14. An upright liberal had no chance.

                His website positions are perfectly reasonable. If Davis had run harder Left, universal single payer instead of public option, universal minimum income instead of $15 minimum wage, assault weapons ban instead of licensure, etc, would he have changed the electorate’s mind? Of course not. The same was true for those centrist Dems you so casually condemn.

                The reason you don’t see a case from me for centrist policies is that I am not making a case for centrist policies.

                I am critiquing the activist Left for engaging in counterproductive campaign practices. Too harsh?

          • P J Evans says:

            I’ve been voting Dem since 1972, and would have before that, except I was too young. I *like* the Squad, and I think they’re good for the party. (Better than some of the antiques that are still in office, or soon to leave.) I think that this will be Pelosi’s last term, because they’ll choose someone younger as speaker in a couple of years, if not sooner.

            ETA: I’m not as far left as my brother, who started out as P&F, or my most-senior-aunt, who I think was a Socialist, back in the 40s and 50s. But I want the party to go back to the left, and stop playing chase-the-right.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          The Democrats don’t have a “FarLeft.” And the policies AOC and Sanders advocate are welcomed by a majority of Americans. In fact, many don’t go far enough, which leads to public disenchantment that the supposed Democratic alternative to Republicans is such weak tea.

          A better description might be that the Blue Dogs ran toward the corporate campaign cash, bundled by lobbyists. Their policy positions, like their tails, followed the money.

      • harpie says:

        AOC was taking on this topic earlier today.

        5:37 AM · Nov 6, 2020

        People need to really look at the communities who delivered these miraculous victories in AZ, GA, MI, MN, etc. They are rarely a focus of traditional political investment or electoral strategy, & are often sacrificed in policy negotiations. […]

        And Ben Winkler agreed:
        9:52 AM · Nov 6, 2020

        There’s a lot of totally correct talk about how @StaceyAbrams was pivotal to winning Georgia. Folks: Stacey & her team were pivotal to flipping Wisconsin too. And every other battleground. They worked with us to build massive, supercharged voter protection teams—starting *early.*

      • harpie says:


        7:45 AM · Nov 6, 2020

        There are folks running around on TV blaming progressivism for Dem underperformance. I was curious, so I decided to open the hood on struggling campaigns of candidates who are blaming progressives for their problems. Almost all had awful execution on digital. DURING A PANDEMIC. [THREAD] […]

        Also, the decision to stop knocking doors is one people need to grapple with and analyze.

        @IlhanMN and @RashidaTlaib never stopped and may very well have helped delivered a Biden Presidency bc of it

        • Rayne says:

          All that. It’s not that they’re too left. They made a solid case with their constituents, offering a different, better vision, and they made sure they reach each constituent even in a pandemic.

          Thanks for sharing the links, harpie.

        • Eureka says:

          A couple of complementary points to AOC on digital: as I’ve mentioned re the three-state/many districts tv ads I’ve consumed, the GOP flooded the zone all over the ballot with ads for tight or important races. They also approached TV ads like they do FB ones: somewhat psychographic a la CA — a smidge beyond basic fear ads — you can only get so variable on tv; and with AB-testing style. By the latter I mean they’d run two nearly identical ads/slightly differing (e.g. “woman quietly concerned about a Biden admin”), such that the IRL equivalent of clicking like or share would become the amount of attention spent/impact.

          The number of GOP attack ads for a given race generally far outnumbered any positive ones from the targeted candidates, so “reach” was impaired for targets who couldn’t or didn’t match ad buys (beyond the facts that negative ads are both more memorable and attention-grabbing).

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      For a UC Berkeley guy who says he enjoyed a wide variety of recreational plants, you do a great job channeling establishment Democratic angst.

      I couldn’t disagree more about the supposed value add from Schumer and Pelosi, or their opposites, Bernie and AOC. The Dems’ House majority fell and the Senate pick-up barely registered – despite Donald Trump, Covid, and a major recession.

      A lot of that is on the Dem establishment’s rejection of substantial reform and its harkening back to some mythical status quo ante-Trump. It won’t – and shouldn’t – happen for the Dems any more than it did for the slave-holding South.

      • PhoneInducedPinkEye says:

        The party is too top-heavy with folks who are unable to adjust to the new political climate, which sucks. I think it is going to take at least ten years to filter them out.

        Eventually AOC should run for president, when the dem leadership and national organization get their shit together.

          • Molly Pitcher says:

            If she were wise and strategic, AOC would shadow Pelosi to try to pick-up, by osmosis, every trick Nancy knows about counting and twisting arms. She is young, charming and charismatic, but she lacks the battle scars of the congressional trench warfare that comes to Pelosi like breathing.

            If she really wants to be in power, it would be to her advantage to master sausage making. Look at the power that gave to LBJ.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              Obama served six or seven years in the Illinois state legislature, and four in the US Senate. His fourth year he spent running for president.

              AOC could spend four years in the House and one term in the Senate and have more experience making sausage than Obama. But she has lots of choices ahead of her.

      • graham firchlis says:

        EoH, you confuse my goals with my advocated tactics. I am an unreconstructed freedom loving ’60s equalitarian, and no past tense please. I continue to enjoy my plants.

        But I am not persuaded that beating up on the Dems is a winning strategy for the Left. Terrorizing the middle is courting disaster.

        Consider the last twenty congresses, since 1980. Only twice have the voters installed a Democratic president with both a Democratic House and Senate. Clinton went rightward, the Left recoiled and the Democratic coalition shattered. The result was Republican control of both chambers, for the rest of Clinton’s presidency and the first three congresses of GWB’s terms.

        Obama had both chambers his first two years, and moved as far Left as the constraints of congressional votes allowed. The Left, still upset that Obama had defeated Hillary, attacked the Dems for not going leftward enough. Again the Democratic coalition crumbled and Obama was crippled by Republican congressional hegemony his last six years.

        Unless the Left – all of it – focuses their full energy to shifting the electorate – specifically, those who will actually show up to vote – to support of Democratic candidates, including those less than perfect who can win in their districts and states, we can sustain the possibility of beneficial change however incremental. If not, then the Republicans will regain full control and there will be no hope.

        To reframe Mao for democracy, political power comes out of the ballot box. Bring votes and winning candidates, the Left will control the Democratic party and the course of the country. Fail to do so, and the Left will be largely ignored.

        • earlofhuntingdon says:

          You confuse bending under irresistible pressure with preference. Mr. Obama, for example, hired Rahm Emanuel as COS. He proceeded immediately to “fire” the campaign’s progressive wing, apparently to signal to Republicans and Democratic establishment patrons that Mr. Obama was not remotely leftist.

          Attempts by the left to regain momentum were consistently dismissed. They were deemed typically unrealistic or simply interfered with Mr. Obama’s agenda, whatever that was.

          Success isn’t a candidate: it’s successful policies and the people behind them 24/7. Neither the ballot box nor counted ballots are sufficient to create them. It requires intensive organizing before and constant pressure after a successful election.

          That requires walking and chewing gum at the same time: pressuring hard behind the woodshed for preferred policies, but supporting leaders when in conflict with the right. I think AOC does that admirably.

          • skua says:

            I’ve also read an account by one of the organizers of the grass-roots network that Obama set up, and that so effectively got him elected for his first term. Prior to the election, by this account, head office was very interested in and responsive to feedback from these community organizations. After the election the organizer found that there was no longer anyone at head office tasked with liasing.
            Instead the grassroots organisations were left unsupported. “Thanks, we’ll take it from here”, was the attitude expressed.
            The effects of treating motivated people in communities like that can probably be measured and would be negative and condusive of cynicism.

        • Rayne says:

          Man, you are just not getting it with this “beating up on the Dems is a winning strategy for the Left.

          No. The people you call ‘the Dems’ aren’t but dinosaurs clinging to neoliberal Third Way politics which ended up pulling the entire party to the right, allowing themselves to be constantly battered ever more rightward.

          No. No, NO. The Democratic Party’s problem has been that it failed to recognize the right-wing’s persistent and insidious application of the Overton window rightward, failed to ensure there was an equal or stronger countervailing force to the left so that it could maintain its place and its ideology.

          That’s EXACTLY why we ended up with Trump — after decades of pushing ever rightward, a morally-flexible shell of a man who appears to be the right’s poster boy, molded by Bannon’s fervor for Ledeenian universal fascism in which all existing norms evaporate under creative destruction, forming a government of, by, and for business and corrupt pseudo-business entities (i.e., components of organized crime).

          You also know jack about what Obama did — he literally relied on FDR’s “make me do it” attitude, otherwise he would go along to get along with centrism. The contributors at this site fought not for the ACA but a public health care option. We know what it was like to watch the left cave in, lured rightward by promises of funding which didn’t pan out over the long-run. Obama did the same thing with same-sex marriage, had to be dragged along the way by a combination of judicial opinions and activism until the decision was really taken out of his hands.

          If it wasn’t for the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party — that which you call ‘the left’ — which built a progressive machine after Bush’s re-election, there wouldn’t have been a blue wave in 2006, and Obama probably wouldn’t have won in 2008. That left you treat as an entity outside the Dems you refer to IS the Democratic Party.

          Like Stacey Abrams who organized Georgie and registered 800,000 voters. SHE is the party. SHE’s building it from the ground up. SHE is responsible in no small part for a Biden-Harris presidency. Same with the Justice Dems who likewise invigorate and renew the commitment the Democratic Party used to have for economic democracy and social justice.

          I don’t know who you think you are talking to here at this site. WE are ‘the left’ you are discussing so goddamned dismissively. Should you even be here?

          • Eureka says:

            I had to stomach this thread in chunks, but boy am I glad I came back to it.

            This is some literature, Rayne. Brava.

          • John Lehman says:

            “ I continue to enjoy my plants.”
            Maybe a bit to much?

            Sorry about the ad hominem but it’s such a tempting target.

        • P J Evans says:

          *I* caught flak for describing Obama as a Reagan Republican. In 2008. I wanted someone farther left, but I voted D anyway, because there were worse choices. Like the Greens.

  35. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Salon’s Chauncey DeVega interviewed psychologist Dan McAdams. Needless to say, he is wary and critical of Donald Trump and what he might do before leaving office.

    McAdams thinks Trump is a one-off, who fits no psychological category that is useful for public commentary. Trump has no sense of his origin, no shame or restraint, no awareness of a past or future. He has only today, and he must win or lose today’s battle because there is no other. His only consistent feature is that he must always win, no matter how much he has to redefine winning to make it so.

    I found McAdams’s description useful but too narrow. He ignores many facts about Trump’s past and present (his being born to great wealth of questionable origin, his addiction to lies and crime). And he dismisses categories, whose collective information we might find useful – not to treat Trump – but to help us sort out how to assess and deal with him.

    I did enjoy that McAdams’s assessment reminded me of a fable about the fox and hare. The quick, sharp-toothed fox is always winning, then digs a new hole to hide each food-treasure. But in the morning, he is hungry and has to start all over, because he can’t remember anything he did the day before. When the fox eventually slows in the chase, he starves.

  36. Molly Pitcher says:

    I am laughing loudly, MSNBC was just interviewing Steve Schmidt who said that he thinks the next GOP Presidential candidate will be….Tucker Carlson !!

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        I’m anticipating a mud wrestling match between her and Nicky Haley. But it will be done in pearls and with a clenched smile covering those capped teeth.

    • Alan Charbonneau says:

      He could be right. Carlson would get the Fox viewers and that might be the biggest piece of the puzzle.

  37. Norskeflamthrower says:

    I just checked Digby again and got in but when I left and went back it gave me the same hacking warning as before….anyone have any idea what’s up over there?

  38. Mary M McCurnin says:

    Can Biden make “temporary” appointments to his cabinet and McConnell can’t complain or stand in the way.

    • Rayne says:

      Biden can do exactly what Trump did: not make appointments, leave the role filled by Acting Director of Whatever-Department. The trick is ensuring the Acting Director is competent and not going to undermine Biden-Harris agenda.

  39. Jenny says:

    Thanks Rayne. Humming “Georgia” and “Philadelphia Freedom” today.
    Nice sound, “President Biden” and “Vice President Harris.”

    Now Trump claims fraud election. So why would the Dems steal the Presidency but not the Senate? Wouldn’t that help the Dems to steal the Senate too?

    • blueedredcounty says:

      The Dems need control of the Senate because of Moscow Mitch. He’s already planning on obstructing Biden even worse than he obstructed Obama.

      Personally, I think he and his wife need to be put under an investigatory microscope for financial irregularities and potential lawbreaking from her stint as a cabinet secretary and his entire career.

      Longer term, I think we are past the point where we need a series of Anti-Corruption amendments to deal with the influence of political parties, money, and foreign governments in our elections.

      It should not be possible for someone who could not get hired for a federal job or who would fail a background check, to become the nominee of a major party, much less become president.

      It should not be possible for a single political party in control of one house of Congress to jeapardize, damage, and prevent from functioning the other two branches of government. The informal rules and protocols for getting Cabinet officials approved/denied and judges confirmed need to be embedded in the Constitution in a way that someone like Mitch McConnell can’t hijack and damage the Federal Judiciary for over 12 years and counting without permanent and severe consequences.

      Same thing as the consequences that need to be reckoned on people who were no longer valid as even “acting” Federal cabinet officials because they have never been nominated or confirmed and were long past their acting days and should have had the integrity to step down. Since they lacked it, there needs to be severe criminal penalties for breaking those laws.

      • posaune says:

        I’d like to see an investigation of Elaine Chow at DOT,
        especially govt contracts for concrete companies (like the subsidiaries her family owns) — there has been so much road construction in the past three years. No doubt some has served to increase employment, but I have to wonder about the contracts behind it all.

  40. Raven Eye says:

    Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman to NBC: “The president can sue a ham sandwich … every one of these ballots that’s in play right now that’s gonna be counted throughout the rest of the day has been lawfully received and going to be counted.”

  41. earlofhuntingdon says:

    I don’t know why, but Trump has me thinking a lot these days about Gomer Pyle. “Sur-prise, sur-prise, sur-prise,” and “Shame, shame, shame.”

    Trump’s latest grift. He is making his election litigiousness pay, by asking for public donations. But the fine print discloses – per Rick Hasen, I believe – that half of every dollar contributed to his election litigation fund will go toward retiring unrelated 2020 campaign debt.

    I suspect both of those accounts will be as hard to audit as a black box program at the Pentagon.

  42. harpie says:

    So, Trump got ALITO to give credence to his DISINFORMATION about Pennsylvania,
    and SEAN SPICER lost no time in PUSHING it:
    8:21 PM · Nov 6, 2020

    No way to call Pennsylvania for now: #SCOTUS Justice Alito issued an order that ballots received after after 8pm on election day in Pennsylvania be set aside – state leg did not change the voting laws per the constitution- state court did. This could be huge for @realDonaldTrump

    BUT as Zoe Tillman relayed today:
    8:04 PM · Nov 6, 2020

    Important to note about tonight’s order from Alito – PA GOP said they didn’t have any evidence that counties were, in fact, failing to segregate the ballots at issue. They argued that they just hadn’t gotten affirmative assurances of compliance

    • harpie says:
      8:05 PM · Nov 6, 2020

      Justin Levitt, an election law professor at Loyola Law School, said ongoing litigation isn’t about affecting results at this point, but is about shaping a narrative or “retroactively bending reality” to fit President Trump’s false claims about voting.

      We’re in the midst of an ONGOING disinformation campaign. Just like “BENGHAZI” and “White Water” we will be hearing about vague insinuations of wrong doing forever.

      • harpie says:

        AND this disinformation operation will have negative real world consequences: Today in Fulton County [Georgia?]:
        6:31 PM · Nov 6, 2020

        “He is currently in hiding.” Fulton Election Director Rick Barron says an election worker at State Farm was falsely accused of throwing out a ballot, video uploaded to Twitter and his personal info including car license plate were released [VIDEO]

        Kate Starbird is calling these people VOTER FRAUD VIGILANTES
        7:50 PM · Nov 6, 2020

        Voter fraud vigilantes, fed by internet conspiracy theories and a disinformation campaign pushed right wing media elites, harassing and threatening poll workers… not surprising I guess, but so terribly sad.

      • harpie says:

        Regarding “video uploaded to twitter”, this came out of the NEVADA litigation today:
        4:53 PM · Nov 6, 2020

        A hearing in a GOP-touted lawsuit alleging debunked tales of voting irregularities in Nevada is about to begin […]

        A Nevada election authority on the line now says that the election counts are transparent, and dozens of observers watch it regularly.

        She says Chris Prudhome, one of the plaintiffs, was told he broke the rules by recording. Only credentialed media can do that.

        Prudhome can return if he observes the rules, she adds […]

    • harpie says:
      11:28 AM · Nov 6, 2020

      Holy shit Clay Higgins is off the rails [VIDEO]

      Congressman Clay Higgins [La]: Election Has Been Compromised
      [You Tube link]
      Nov 6, 2020

      Louisiana Congressman Clay Higgins uploaded a video to his Facebook page to talk about the 2020 Presidential Election, and claims to have “inside data” about the election being compromised.

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        HOLY CRAP is an extreme understatement !!!

        I hope for all our sakes this guy is really drunk, otherwise he is pretty terrifying if he is not alone.

        He has had some major kool-aid.

    • harpie says:

      All the smart people are saying these lawsuits are not serving Trump’s purposes…don’t make any sense.
      That might be true IF his purpose was to “win” the election.
      But he MUST realize he’s lost, so what could be the use of all this?

      One idea: Trump and his followers are seeding and nurturing an alternative “reality” they can use to undermine and DELEGITIMIZE Biden’s presidency [and everyone who voted for it.]

      • Rayne says:

        The delegitimization of the election is one reason given by many observers for Team Trump’s obstructive efforts. The longer this drags out, the less legitimate the election looks, especially if the right-wing media gets a chance to wind up its audience with misinfo and disinfo in the interim.

        But Team Trump has a problem which is hurting their efforts.

        Heh. Notice how there are no big guns sticking their neck out for Trump, like Ted Olson? Even Alan Dershowitz’ name hasn’t popped up. I think they’ve all thrown the towel in on him and he’s not catching a clue.

        EDIT: Bwa-ahahahahahahhah super spreader strikes again, hurting his team’s response to the election!!!

        So the guy who should be helping coordinate response between Trump and his campaign and the media is sick and unable to do an effective job on top of all the lawyers who won’t get caught near Trump now.

  43. Alan Charbonneau says:

    Per CBS news:
    Maricopa, AZ
    ”According to county officials, there are 72,000 early ballots left to process and tabulate, 15,000 provisional ballots left to process and 5,000 early ballots left to verify.”

    So, if provisionals split 50/50, Trump needs 70% of the 72k votes left to catch Biden in Maricopa.
    Ain’t gonna happen

    PA – Biden leads by ~ 28,000

      • Rugger9 says:

        Sometimes the voter party preference is reported for issued provisional ballots (IIRC Jon Ralston retweeted one of his sources that was able to get that info, and those broke 50-50 in NV), but I do not know if PA does that.

    • Rugger9 says:

      The idea behind all of the harrumphing about the delayed ballots (and the GOP attempt to get their voters to submit late-postmarked ballots in PA that undermined their position) was the hope that these would be mingled with the rest of the mail-in vote which would be used to throw all of them out. However, the election officials were tipped off by the first round of litigation and wisely kept the late arriving ballots segregated. That means DJT needs them counted because he’s behind now.

      In NV, the latest litigation about the absentees moving away flagged a large number of military ballots (AE, AP, etc.) which in most years would tend to support presidents who didn’t call his soldiers losers and suckers. Since DJT trails in NV he needs to have the votes counted.

      IIRC, DJT hasn’t even been to the USS Arizona Memorial which is something every other president has done since it was dedicated. I’ve been there a couple of times and it never fails to move me.

      • Geoguy says:

        He had a private tour of the memorial in Nov. 2017, I think on his way to Asia. By some accounts he was clueless as to the significance of the USS Arizona Memorial and wondered why he had to go there. No surprise from our dangerously uninformed president.

      • Rugger9 says:

        Biden leads in AZ (29,861), GA (7248) and PA (20,153) according to their respective SoS websites. Biden’s still in good shape FWIW.

        • bmaz says:

          Pretty funny that the biggest lead is in the state (AZ) with the least relative population, but the media just….cannot…..seem to call it. What a load of junk.

          • Eureka says:

            Even though the numbers are about reversed now (PA = 30,908 AZ = 20,573), it’s still a bigger relative margin in AZ — outside recount margin, too.

            I wondered if it was the ‘optics’ of a falling total. Or because of their theory that Trump’s only chance was thru PA+ with what remained.

            Wait they just called Biden POTUS because of the PA change per MSNBC (which is a good thing, calling him POTUS), but I get why you are aggravated.

            Trust me, I get it. No one in the media cares about anything about the state of Pennsylvania but for elections.

            The NBC News announcement was 11:25a

            • Eureka says:

              Couple other, perhaps more meaningful factors: it’s probably because he began his campaign here, emphasizing his ties to the Blue Wall Rustbelt which was so horribly ratfucked last time (with MSM powers that be — consciously or not — waiting for the last of that now-infamous trio to come in).

              Sit with it, I actually see this as a very good thing for the symbolism on a few fronts. It might not be as important absent events of 2016, but this gives richness to an American victory.

              I’m feeling this purely as an American.

              • Eureka says:

                *Sitting | It’s a form of closure to the story (and an ending that renders the last several years into a Hero Story) that we didn’t get from the MR or impeachment; could help with healing and moving on to new stories, I think (if we overcome stuck media/ dare to dream new stories for ourselves).

  44. Charlie says:

    Hi guys – over the moon for the USA and indeed the world that the orange nightmare is over after 4 years while here in UK we have 4 years to go with our buffoon. Cheeers!!!

  45. American Abroad says:

    To get a quick understanding of 45’s followers, I can’t recommend enough Jeff Shartlet’s latest piece in Vanity Fair. And if you have some extra time, check out the limited series on Netflix – The Family – based on his book. It was eye-opening for me. I felt like the Vanity Fair article gave me a view no other reporting has.

    • skua says:

      Great read. Humans reading politico-magical meanings into Trump’s rallys and tweets.
      Makes more sense of the videos of Christian spell castings against counting the votes.

  46. BayStateLibrul says:

    It is Saturday morning, and the wait continues.

    “Whatever happens in the near future, something is truly, terrifyingly broken in the United States, and while the degree of brokenness and who is in charge of repair efforts obviously matter, at this moment all comforts seem cold.” – Hasan Altaf.

    We need to start fixing this mess!

  47. harpie says:

    [I don’t know how much time I’ll have today, so I’m just going to leave this here instead of trying to integrate with all the good discussion above. Sorry.]

    12:40 PM · Nov 6, 2020
    The Postal Service found hundreds of ballots in Pennsylvania and North Carolina facilities on Thursday, according to data filed in federal court.
    [NYT link]

    […] A federal judge ordered on Thursday that the Postal Service must conduct additional sweeps of its facilities in states with extended ballot receipt deadlines for leftover ballots. The judge, Emmet G. Sullivan of the District of Columbia, has overseen several lawsuits against the Postal Service.

    Those lawsuits have produced daily logs of the Postal Service’s on-time ballot delivery, which the agency defines as one to three days. On Thursday, nearly 11 percent of ballots sent to election officials did not meet the service standards. In Philadelphia, that figure was 45.1 percent. […]

    2] [Dave Wasserman]
    12:04 AM · Nov 7, 2020

    Been getting a lot of notifications lately.
    Is there something I’m supposed to see here?

    • harpie says:
      1:26 AM · Nov 7, 2020

      Diving into the data, there are 21 Philly precincts that aren’t reporting anywhere near their full vote, all in heavy D areas of the city…

      Turnout city-wide is currently at 61.4% of registered voters, but all of these 21 divisions reported less than 30% of RV’s [registered voter’s] ballots counted, with a heavy concentration in the 27th Ward around University City. […]

      For the time being,
      1] Philadelphia is reporting an unusually low turnout increase and

      2] an unusually high pro-Trump margin shift vs. ’16 than other counties in PA/other states (Wayne, Milwaukee, etc.). […]

      • Eureka says:

        Oh, darnit — I had a great color map by the Inquirer re POTUS votes for all the wards-divisions, can’t find the link now. Spot-intensity within Trump’s areas in the S and NE could be substituted for a map of the white riots during the protests (i.e., sometimes correlation is causation /s. Or not snark…).

        I’ve been suspicious of the numbers this whole time, while also thinking that Judge Sullivan may have truly rescued the election from their corrupt aims with his orders (and oversight).

        Adding: 45 has announced some press conference at a landscaping business in the NE … reporters haven’t figured out the ‘why’ for that ‘where’ yet. However, the business name begins with “Four Seasons”, which Trump first announced as the location (implying the high-brow hotel). There is really great dystopian comedy in that, you can’t write this stuff. Sorry, 11th-string Trumpers: The Four Seasons is reserved for guests like Chrissy and John.

    • harpie says:

      Again, this whole article from ADAM SERWER is spot-on,
      but with regard to the above:

      Pack the Court, Save the Vote
      The Supreme Court’s conservative majority appears poised to entrench minoritarian rule without the consent of the electorate.
      Adam Serwer 6:45 AM ET

      […] Conservatives might retort that liberals regard Trump as an illegitimate president. The difference, which many conservative intellectuals avoid acknowledging with monk-like discipline, is that there are no Democratic efforts to deprive Republican constituencies of the franchise. Many Democrats see Trump’s presidency as illegitimate because of his reciprocal acceptance of aid from foreign adversaries in 2016. They do not view Republican constituencies themselves as illegitimate and unworthy of a right to participate in democracy. Although both parties engage in partisan gerrymandering, the absence of a concerted Democratic effort to, for example, deprive non-college-educated white men or white evangelicals of the ballot illustrates that this retort is an empty farce. […]

    • harpie says:


      8:20 AM · Nov 7, 2020
      8:20 AM · Nov 7, 2020

      Tens of thousands of votes were illegally received after 8 P.M. on Tuesday, Election Day, totally and easily changing the results in Pennsylvania and certain other razor thin states. As a separate matter, hundreds of thousands of Votes were illegally not allowed to be OBSERVED…

      ….This would ALSO change the Election result in numerous States, including Pennsylvania, which everyone thought was easily won on Election Night, only to see a massive lead disappear, without anyone being allowed to OBSERVE, for long intervals of time, what the happened…

      ….Bad things took place during those hours where LEGAL TRANSPARENCY was viciously & crudely not allowed. Tractors blocked doors & windows were covered with thick cardboard so that observers could not see into the count rooms. BAD THINGS HAPPENED INSIDE. BIG CHANGES TOOK PLACE!

      • harpie says:

        The firm of
        RUDY COREY and PAM are still there,
        flinging the propaganda at this time.

        Giuliani claims poll watchers weren’t allowed close enough. So far not produced any evidence of voter fraud.

        “Joe Frazier is still voting here” says Rudy.
        “Also Will Smith’s father voted here twice since he died.”

        • Eureka says:

          Welp, that’s one way to suck some air from their air-sucking (IANAPhysicist but find this possible). Maybe the media also got sick and tired of the shenanigans and were ready to trump Trump (You have a press announcement; well so do we now).

    • harpie says:

      While I was out, this was reported [CNN]:
      10:11 AM · Nov 7, 2020

      Two armed Virginia men who were arrested Thursday outside the Philadelphia Convention Center were “coming to deliver a truck full of fake ballots” to the city

      I did not see that coming.
      The Veterans for Trump guy with ties to the White House just became more interesting than the wackadoodle QAnon guy. [thread]

      Not voter fraud, but ELECTION FRAUD.

    • Alan Charbonneau says:

      Great news!
      It’ll be interesting to see what Trump does between now and Inauguration Day. Hopefully he won’t damage the country much further.
      Since Biden will have 306 EV, I plan to troll Trump on Twitter with claims of a landslide since that’s exactly the count he had. It’s not productive, but it makes me feel better.

      • tinao says:

        Hi Alan, I’ve been meaning to ask, are you related to the Charbonneau’s who made condiments out west before Heinz became what it is? If you are, we could be related!

  48. Eureka says:

    12:26 PM – November 7, 2020
    Why AP called Pennsylvania for Biden

    The Associated Press called Pennsylvania for Joe Biden, who held a 34,243-vote lead at 11:25 a.m., after it determined that the remaining ballots left to be counted would not allow Trump to catch up. The news agency has already declared Biden the winner in both Michigan and Wisconsin.

    Biden held a 0.51% point lead late Saturday morning. Under Pennsylvania law, a recount is automatic when the margin between two candidates in a statewide race is less than 0.5 percentage points. Biden’s lead over Trump was on track to stay outside of that margin as final votes are counted.

    There are roughly 62,000 mail ballots remaining to be counted. Biden has won the overwhelming majority of mail ballots cast in the state.

    Biden’s win in Pennsylvania was a dramatic, though not unexpected, turn after Trump jumped out to an early Election Day lead of 675,000 votes and prematurely declared he had won the state.

    Over coming days, as local elections officials tabulated more ballots, Trump’s lead dropped sharply, with Biden winning roughly 75 percent of the mail-in vote between Wednesday and Friday, according to an analysis by the AP.

    — Associated Press

    Emphasis added; interesting narrative inclusion, see my comments here:

    Couple other, perhaps more meaningful factors: it’s probably because he began his campaign here, emphasizing his ties to the Blue Wall Rustbelt which was so horribly ratfucked last time (with MSM powers that be — consciously or not — waiting for the last of that now-infamous trio to come in).

    Sit[ting] with it, I actually see this as a very good thing for the symbolism on a few fronts. It might not be as important absent events of 2016, but this gives richness to an American victory.

    I’m feeling this purely as an American.

    It’s a form of closure to the story (and an ending that renders the last several years into a Hero Story) that we didn’t get from the MR or impeachment; could help with healing and moving on to new stories, I think (if we overcome stuck media/ dare to dream new stories for ourselves).

    Also, that last vote tally put Biden out of recount margin which makes the announcement make more sense to me.

  49. tinao says:

    Hi Eureka, as a fellow Pennsylvanian cheers! I gotta go finish refinishing my covid kitchen cabinets, I’ve been working on since spring. Almost there, and my healing broken wrist will get some well needed rest.

    • Eureka says:

      That’s a major project, tinao, I’m glad to hear you think it’ll be buttoned up in time for winter — but yikes, watch that wrist.

      I wonder how many of us will be sober or awake by the time our President-Elect and Vice-President-Elect speak tonight.

      Cheers backatcha, we voted and won!

  50. Tom says:

    I wonder how many Republicans are secretly relieved that “Ding! Dong! The Donald’s gone!” No more bizarre Presidential tweets to have to explain or support or pretend not to have read. No more conspiracy theories to have to rationalize or interpret in reality-based terms. Basically, no more Trump albatross (or albatri if you count the kids) around their collective GOP neck.

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