NOV 6 : Biden closer to winning ; Banon, Graham, and Trump closer to crazy! (And Kayleigh McEnany will always be …)

Nov 4th, 2020 | By | Category: In Brief
“Winter is icumen in/Ezra Pound” by prize-winning Toronto artist Michael Seward.

UPDATED NOV 4, 10:30 AM ET ; NOV 6, 3 AM, 12 NOON : COUNTERWEIGHTS EDITORS’ NOTES : 3 NOV 20, 11:40 PM ET : Just under an hour ago David Coletto at Abacus Data tweeted : “We won’t know what the outcome is tonight. Feels like it’s best to go to bed, try to sleep, and refocus tomorrow.”

At 11:35 ET Mr. Coletto tweeted again : “I’ll dream of this map” – where Biden gets 290 electoral college votes to Trump’s 248. (It takes 270 to win.) This assumes Biden will finally win Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin – where he is currently running behind Trump.

At 11:26 ET the former NDP member of the Ontario legislature Cheri DiNovo tweeted : “We should probably all go to bed, but who can? Now 192 to 114. It’ll be awhile. It’ll be close. I see many lawyers in the future.”

At least it is now very clear why Trump has talked so much about wanting the counting of votes to end on election night!

4 NOV 20, 12:05 AM ET : In the results reported on the Globe and Mail and CTV websites (conservative at least for Canada in both cases) Biden (49.8%) has now moved ahead of Trump (48.6%) in the popular vote. At this point Biden has 213 electoral votes to Trump’s 118. By 12:25 it’s Biden 223, Trump 145. By 1 AM Biden is still at 223, but Trump has moved up to 174.

At 1:03 AM ET Biden himself tweets : “We feel good about where we are. We believe we are on track to win this election.”

The Michigan law professor and TV legal analyst Barb McQuade has already tweeted, to those in the Twitterverse that share her (and our) views : “No need to stress, friends. This is what we have been expecting all along. The election comes down to a handful of key states where the vote count may take a few days. As mail-in ballots get counted, the numbers will shift toward Biden.”

XYZ by Michael Seward.

But now by 2:30 AM ET Trump has spoken from the White House, and it is very clear his strategy is to contest the legitimacy of the mail-in ballots that are almost certainly more for Biden than Trump, and are still to be counted.

It is very hard for us to see at this point how this Trumpian strategy can portend anything but great grief for the United States – and many other parts of the global village.

In the results reported on the Globe and Mail and CTV websites at 2:50 AM Biden has 236 electoral votes with 49.8% of the popular vote, and Trump has 213 electoral votes with 48.6% of the vote. We are going to close up shop and get some sleep, and then see how it all looks tomorrow, or the next day. Even now, however, it is altogether clear that Trump’s constituency in the 2020 USA is somewhat broader than the opinion polls have been suggesting – yet again.

(Meanwhile, as of 2:50 AM ET, according to our sources as above, the Democrats are ahead in the House 179—171; the Senate is tied 47-47, and Republicans have 27 state Governors to the Democrats 23.)

For the moment, in any case, at the very least all Democratic talk of a bold Trifecta on a new blue wave is rather far from what has actually happened – even if Biden does ultimately win the electoral college (as well as the popular vote where he is already ahead and rising), when all the mail-in votes in the midst of the pandemic have been counted. And if Trump actually wins again in the very end, even with the mail-in ballots, well … let’s wait until it’s clearer what will finally happen before thinking about anything quite like that! Meanwhile again, to all a good night – or morning.

UPDATE NOV 4, 10:30 AM ET : At this point it seems that, whatever else, the Democrats will not gain control of the Senate. (The “Trifecta” dream is dead unless something altogether dramatic happens with the votes still to be counted.) On the other hand, less than an hour ago, the Long Island Democrat Jon Cooper tweeted : “If @JoeBiden wins these four states, where he’s currently leading, he’ll be our next president.” (The four states are Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, and Wisconsin.).

Meanwhile, the counting continues. And as we look back on this site’s thoughts over the past year, we’re reminded most of Citizen X’s April 26 contribution : “COVID-19 America viewed from across the lake : remembering the 1960 US presidential election 60 years later.” (Though in 2020 Joe Biden already has a greater share of the popular vote than John F. Kennedy won then as of Nov 4, 11:30AM ET 50.1% and rising for Biden vs 48.3% and falling for Trump!) Like everyone else, we are staying tuned!

UPDATE NOV 6, 3:00 AM ET : On the NY Times website, the presidential vote in Georgia is now very close, and Biden still leads in Arizona and Nevada. Meanwhile, Trump has made outrageous and unsupported claims about voter fraud, and they have been seconded by Lindsay Graham. See also Daniel Dale on the CNN site : “Fact check: Trump delivers the most dishonest speech of his presidency as Biden closes in on victory.”

Meanwhile again, as reported by The Independent in the UK : “Steve Bannon said a second term for Donald Trump should start by displaying the severed heads of Dr Anthony Fauci and FBI director Christopher Wray on the White House ‘as a warning’.” To quote Mr. Banon directly : “I’d actually like to go back to the old times of Tudor England. I’d put their heads on pikes, right, I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats, you either get with the programme or you’re gone.”

We give up on just what all this means at the moment, as we close up shop and try to get some sleep. There is hopefully better news ahead. But what the Canadian comedian Don Harron used to call the Excited States is for the moment coming all too close to crazy, crazy, crazy …

Still, we finally agree : Democracy in America will win out in the end, as it has recurrently in the past, one way or another. The Kansas City heritage of Mrs. Parker’s son and Harry Truman will finally shine the brightest. Or as Winston Churchill once explained, the United States finally does the right thing after it has tried everything else first. And meanwhile yet again, in early November 2020 we are staying tuned, of course.

NOON ET, NOV 6 : So, to quote Nate Cohn who covers elections etc for the New York Times : “Biden now leads in states worth 306 electoral votes.” (The as yet uncalled states where he’s ahead are Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, and Pennsylvania.)

As others have noted, if this result prevails Biden will have defeated Trump in the electoral college by the same 306—232 margin that Trump defeated Clinton by in 2016! As still others have noted, however, “Trump lost the popular vote in 2016 by 3 million votes, whereas Biden will win the popular vote in 2020 by perhaps 6-7 million votes.”

(Or as Ezra Klein has put it : “There are some razor-thin margins in some key electoral states. But this election, in terms of the popular will, will not end up close. Biden’s margin over Trump is on-track to be larger than Clinton-Trump, Obama-Romney, Bush-Kerry…”)

Meanwhile, we’re still staying tuned. As we used to say way back when, in the late 1960s : Peace and Love. And even some hard core Democrats may remember that, whatever else, Kayleigh McEnany will always be hot, hot, hot!

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