When is Dandy Don going to sing his song?

When Monday Night Football began airing in the 1970s, one of the broadcasters was a colorful former quarterback named Don Meredith. Near the end of the game, when the outcome was no longer in doubt, “Dandy Don,” as he was called, would sing an old country song.

“Turn out the lights, the party’s over. They say all good things must end. Turn out the lights, the party’s over. I am so glad we a parted as friends.”

The latest Harvard CAPS-Harris survey finds that nearly two out of three voters believe the election was fair and that Biden won. Fifty-eight percent of all voters said it’s time for Trump to concede. The result would be higher, but the outgoing president’s hold over his party is still strong and two-thirds of Republicans believe Trump won. That truly is mind-boggling.

Yet, Michigan was certified for Joe Biden/ Kamala Harris yesterday and Pennsylvania is certifying county by county as we speak, in spite of the outgoing president’s gamesmanship. And, more importantly, the GSA claimed Biden/ Harris as the winner and is moving forward with the transition.

While the outgoing president relented to the GSA decision after getting pressure from the business community and Republican Senators, he still did not concede. Will those two-thirds of Republicans ever come around or are they destined to continue to believe the orchestrated fraud claims, in spite of two dozen lost court cases (vs only one small victory) and Republican election officials pushing back saying there was no wide-spread fraud?

Maybe some will, begrudgingly, but others will carry this torch and be consistently reminded by the untruthful and corrupt bent former president over the next four years. That is the sad situation for out country caused by Trump and abetted by his sycophants too scared to call the vindictive outgoing president on the carpet for his unproven claims.

So, Mr. Trump, Dandy Don is starting to sing. “Turn out the lights, the party’s over…”

Fraudulent voter fraud claims suffer more setbacks

Well, it is has been two weeks since the election in the United States. A week ago Saturday, Joe Biden was declared the winner and is now president-elect. At the end of last week, Arizona and Georgia were called for Biden, while the president won North Carolina. So, that brings the electoral college tally to 306 to 232.

Note, this is the same margin as Trump had over Clinton in 2016, which he defined as a landslide, even with 3 million fewer votes nationally. In 2020, this victory is more significant as it is with the winner getting over 5 million votes more than the president. But, the president has continued with his orchestrated voter fraud claims case which he has been staging for many months. Yet, his fraudulent claims of voter fraud is not going very well.

Per a Bloomberg piece by Erik Larson called “Trump and Allies Dial Back Voter Fraud Claims After Defeats,” the fraudulent fraud claims continue to suffer defeats.

“President Donald Trump’s legal campaign to overturn his 2020 election defeat shrank further with the narrowing of a key Pennsylvania lawsuit and the retreat of supporters who had sued in four battleground states.

The Trump campaign on Sunday revised its highly touted suit to block certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s projected Pennsylvania victory, abandoning its most extravagant claims of widespread voter fraud. On Monday, four suits associated with a conservative group that also sought to block election certifications based on broad voter-fraud claims were dropped in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia.

The broad pullback follows several major courtroom defeats last week and highlights the difficulty lawyers are having in backing up Trump’s claims of a ‘rigged’ election.”

Americans need GOP Senators and other Trump sycophants to start recognizing what is going on and stop this fraud being perpetrated by the president. Trump lost because he got fewer votes than Biden in key swing states. Of course, where he got more, there was no fraud claims. It is amazing how that works.

Americans and global watchers this is what a conspiracy looks like. This is what fraud looks like. Yet, the person leading this charge is not some group that must include duly appointed Republican election officials who have vehemently supported their processes against the president’s claims. It is being led by the president of the United States whose ego cannot stand losing. This is not leadership, it is petulance.

Yet, be forewarned by the president’s niece who said her uncle will “burn it all down to avoid losing.” He has already harmed America which prides itself on a peaceful transfer of power. Is this corrupt and deceitful president going to be the first to buck this extremely important trend?

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/trump-and-allies-dial-back-voter-fraud-claims-after-defeats/ar-BB1b3STY?ocid=msedgdhp

A recipe for election conspiracy

The following is a recipe for an election conspiracy that began earlier this year. It is being perpetrated and orchestrated by the president of the United States, not a vast contagion of complicit election officials, that would have to include many Republicans.

I mention this as Trump supporters are following the president’s lead saying this election is being stolen from him. Yet, Trump’s base and sycophants, whether aware or unaware, are part of his orchestrated conspiracy to defraud the American people. What he is doing now was predicted and predictable. The recipe is simple:

1) Recognize many people will vote by mail because of COVID-19
2) Understand the mission of the GOP over the last ten years to make it harder for the wrong people to vote (Google ALEC and Voter ID laws, Surgical gerrymandering)
3) Defame the mail-in process and raise questions
4) Hire a person to hobble the post office
5) Hire law firms with over 1,000 lawyers to prepare for a post-election battle if needed
6) Enlist as many GOP led state governments to restrict further mail-in votes
7) Encourage supportive voters to vote in person, knowing the in-person votes would be counted first
8) If needed, claim victory on election night while ahead and try to stop the counting
9) Claim the election is being stolen and sue

While some may feel this is farfetched, after reading about the attorneys being hired and the president’s words and actions, I wrote in September a piece called “Take it to the bank – the president will sue to avoid losing the election.” And, Senator Bernie Sanders eerily predicted on a TV talk show what Trump would do three weeks before he did it.

At the heart of all of this is a person who is known for lying, cutting corners, cheating, and being ego-maniacal, meaning he cannot stand to lose. As his niece said, her uncle will burn everything down to avoid losing. That appears to be so.

Trump appointed Election Official blasts Trump’s false election claims

An article caught my eye yesterday called “Federal election official blasts Trump’s false election claims as ‘laughable,’ ‘baffling’ and ‘insulting'” by Alex Marquardt of CNN. The article can be linked to below. Here are a few leading paragraphs.

“A senior federal election security official who was appointed by President Donald Trump has blasted the President’s false post-election claims, calling them ‘baffling’, ‘laughable’ and ‘insulting’.

Asked in an interview what he would say to Trump about the election, Ben Hovland said ‘these conspiracy theories that are flying around have consequences.’

Hovland runs the Election Assistance Commission which, in part, tests and certifies voting machines. He was nominated by President Donald Trump last year and unanimously confirmed by the Senate. He works closely with other federal agencies that oversee elections, like the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency.

‘At a minimum, it’s insulting to the professionals that run our elections and hopefully that’s the worst that comes of it,’ Hovland told MIT Technology Review. ‘Our people, they’re doing their jobs but they don’t feel safe doing it. That is a tragedy. That is awful. These are public servants. This isn’t a job you do for glory or to get rich.’

The only comments to add to Mr. Hovland’s interview are several Republican election officials and Secretaries of State in places like Arizona, Georgia, and Pennsylvania, to name a few, have said on the record there is no widespread voter fraud in their states. In fact, the Department of Homeland Security said it was the most secure election ever.

It should be noted the president’s lawsuits are not faring well in the various courts, as he has only one won in Pennsylvania, which got a few votes thrown out and has lost about a dozen. It is also telling that two of the law firms representing Trump’s campaign have asked judges to allow them to withdraw as counsel. The reason is their own lawyers are critical of their firms’ efforts to harm our voting integrity.

The hard truth is the president has lost the election as his opponent got more votes in the states where it mattered. Ironically, the electoral college victory of 306 to 232 is the same as Trump won over Clinton, which he called a “landslide.”

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/federal-election-official-blasts-trump-s-false-election-claims-as-laughable-baffling-and-insulting/ar-BB1aZS6m?ocid=msedgdhp

Former Trump National Security Director tells GOP to acknowledge the reality

John Bolton urges Republicans: “‘Acknowledge the reality that Biden is the president-elect’” in an article with his title by Quint Forgey of Politico. Here are a few paragraphs below:

“Former national security adviser John Bolton urged congressional Republicans in a new interview to ‘acknowledge the reality’ that Joe Biden is president-elect — predicting GOP lawmakers would survive any potential backlash from President Donald Trump if they broke with him over the 2020 election results.

In an interview with NPR that aired Friday, Bolton said Republicans ‘may not like’ recognizing Biden as the winner of the White House race, ‘but the country deserves to give him the preparation he needs. A gracious president who kept the country’s interests first would acknowledge that.’

‘All I’m saying is that showing disagreement with the president is not fatal to your political future. I’m not asking anybody to climb Mount Suribachi and plant the American flag on top of it,’ Bolton added, referring to the iconic photograph of U.S. Marines raising the flag during the Battle of Iwo Jima.”

Yesterday, the president-elect was declared the winner in Arizona and Georgia, while the president was declared such in North Carolina. The electoral college count now tallies 306 votes to Biden and 232 to Trump. Ironically, this is the same margin of victory that Trump had in 2016. The key in 2020 is Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin went for the Democrat candidate this time.

On the legal front, the Trump campaign efforts are waning. Two law firms representing Trump are seeking permission from judges to back out of cases. A case in Arizona was withdrawn as it will not change the result and the Trump campaign has lost several others in Pennsylvania and Michigan while winning one small case that threw out some ballots in PA. A hand recount is occurring in Georgia, as per state law due to the closeness of the election.

Sadly, with the orchestrated manner in which the president claimed victory, tried to stop the counts, noted voter fraud was trying to steal the election and with his lawsuits, his base believes something is amiss. The fact some spineless Senators have gone along with the Trump charade is frustrating. Trump lost because Biden got more votes in key states.

Four Republican Senators (Romney, Collins, Murkowski and Sasse) have publicly acknowledged Biden as president-elect. Many others have done so privately to Biden. Senators Langford and Grassley have been vocal about Biden getting intelligence briefings. As they note, it is a national security risk for him not to be up to speed.

In my view, this yet one more series of examples of the incumbent focusing on himself rather than the country. As his niece Mary said, her uncle will “burn down everything to avoid losing.” That is evident and a scary premonition of what could come. A person who acts corruptly and deceitfully will stoop to just about anything to win.

Yet, one question seems to evade Trump and his supporters that evokes Occam’s Razor. Occam’s Razor notes the simplest explanation is the more obvious reason. Trump is asking us to believe there is a massive voter fraud effort against him, which would have to include the collusion of many Republican election officials and Secretaries of State.

Is it is easier to believe that a massive voter fraud scheme was undertaken, or a president, who is known for being untruthful, who hired attorneys over the summer, who defamed the mail-in vote process, who hobbled the post office and who told his voters to vote in person knowing those votes would be counted first, is perpetuating a fraud on the American public?

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/bolton-urges-republicans-acknowledge-the-reality-that-biden-is-the-president-elect/ar-BB1aZck0?ocid=msedgdhp

Two great speeches – words of unity, healing and working together

Whether Americans voted for the Joe Biden and Kamala Harris ticket this week, the two speeches given by Biden and Harris were powerful and unifying. Words of unity, healing and working together were emphasized. Seeing an African-American, immigrant woman in the Vice-President role offers hope to young girls of all colors. By itself, that is a big deal.

I was planning to write more on the topic, but my friend Jill wrote an excellent piece called “Hope, Unity and Patience.” I encourage you to read it with the link below. The only words I will leave you with is our nation must heal and must work together. The song lyric “united we stand, divided we fall,” has pertinent meaning.

Even Senior Republicans speak out against Trump’s election claims

Courtesy of the US News article link below as well as other sources like Business Insider, The Guardian and The Hill, here are a few quotes from several senior Republican leaders regarding the election claims of the president.

Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania “I saw the president’s speech last night and it was very hard to watch. The president’s allegations of large-scale fraud and theft of the election are just not substantiated. I’m not aware of any significant wrongdoing here,” Toomey said on “TODAY.”

Senator Mitt Romney of Utah – Per The Hill, Romney, in a statement posted to Twitter, said the president was “right” to “exhaust legal remedies,” including asking for recounts and that alleged voting irregularities be investigated, but “wrong to say that the election was rigged, corrupt and stolen. Doing so damages the cause of freedom here and around the world, weakens the institutions that lie at the foundation of the Republic and recklessly inflames destructive and dangerous passions,” Romney added.

Senator Marco Rubio of Florida – Per US News, Rubio, who ran against Trump in the 2016 presidential primaries and campaigned for for the president in recent weeks, tweeted ‘The result of the presidential race will be known after every legally cast vote has been counted. Taking days to count legally cast votes is NOT fraud,” he wrote. “And court challenges to votes cast after the legal voting deadline is NOT suppression.”

Senators Mike Lee of Utah, Rob Portman of Ohio and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska –  The Senators echoed the sentiment in the same US News article below, saying the votes should be counted. Lee asked people to “allow the vote counters to do their job.”  We should respect that process and ensure that all ballots cast in accordance with state laws are counted. It’s that simple,’ Portman said, while Murkowski urged “everyone to be patient.’

Congressman Adam Kinzinger of IllinoisPer US News, “We want every vote counted, yes every legal vote (of course). But, if you have legit concerns about fraud present EVIDENCE and take it to court. STOP Spreading debunked misinformation,” tweeted Congressman Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.

Congressman Will Hurd of Texas (and former CIA officer) – Per US News, Hurd of Texas, who is retiring, went further. He accused the president of undermining the foundations of the country. “A sitting president undermining our political process & questioning the legality of the voices of countless Americans without evidence is not only dangerous & wrong, it undermines the very foundation this nation was built upon. Every American should have his or her vote counted,” Hurd tweeted.

German foreign minister Heiko MaasPer The Guardian: The German foreign minister, Heiko Maas, said: “America is more than a one-man show. Anyone who continues to pour oil on the fire in a situation like this is acting irresponsibly. Now is the time to keep a cool head until an independently determined result is available.”

‘”In order for the result – which has not yet been determined – to be accepted, everyone must first show restraint. Decent losers are more important for the functioning of a democracy than radiant winners.”

These voices are not alone. They speak for many. We need to be patience and trust the people, who appear to take their job with seriousness of purpose and try to get it right, to finish counting the votes. Recounts can occur if warranted per each state law. And, a candidate can bring lawsuit if he or she thinks there was a problem. Yet, disparaging a process before and while it is going on is beyond poor form. The word used a few times above is “irresponsible.”

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/senior-republicans-speak-out-against-donald-trump-s-election-claims/ar-BB1aLkPT?ocid=msedgdhp

Two sets of thoughts this Friday

“Stop the counting,” the president of the United States cries.

I was thinking of an analogy of the New England Patriots who were badly losing to the Atlanta Falcons late in the third quarter of the Super Bowl a couple of years ago. Stopping the counting, would be like Trump, the QB for the winning team, going to the referee and saying “why don’t you call this game at the end of the quarter. I have already tweeted we won and playing anymore would be stealing the game from me?” The referee shook is head and said “you have to be kidding me. Oh, and by the way, the opposing QB is Tom Brady, so I don’t think he would cotton to calling the game then.‘ The Patriots came back to win. 

I applaud the election officials and judges who are trying to get this right. We must count every vote legally cast per the laws of that state. There are three things I find interesting, with one being an extrapolation:
– if they acquiesced to the president and stopped the counting, Biden would be declared the winner as he is ahead in Arizona and Nevada.
– the president is claiming fraud with illegal counting in PA and GA, but he needs the counting to continue in Arizona and Nevada – OK, which is it?
– Trump could still win when the counting is done, so at that time, he will say “I never said we should stop counting – that is fake news.”

If you have not seen the show, Senator Bernie Sanders was on Jimmy Kimmel’s show (I think it was Kimmel) about two weeks ago and he described with eerie accuracy what would transpire. The president would be ahead before all the mail-in votes were counted, he would declare victory and ask that the counting be stopped as it is fraudulent.

Yet, what Sanders defines and Trump is doing is not a surprise, as he has been staging this moment for six months with his attacks on the mail-in process.

Breathe in, breathe out, repeat

Not much to do these days, but let conscientious election officials do their jobs and complete their counts. A key way out of this mess is to follow procedures. The minute procedures are not followed, then it becomes chaotic (and more political). It should be noted one of the contenders has a modus operandi of sowing chaos and not being very truthful in the process. I will let you determine which one.

So, follow me. Find a reflective, meditative pose. Or, do your normal workout routine, be it Yoga, Pilates, spinning, walking, running, etc. Breathe in, breathe out, repeat. The only thing to deliver us from chaos is doing normal things that we enjoy doing.

Back to that chaos sower, quite simply, counting people’s votes is essential to our democracy. The folks on the ground in the election process are dutiful, conscientious and trying to get it right. Stopping the count serves no purpose and gains no new knowledge.

If the president (or the former VP) do not like the results that are close, there are measures in each state to follow to ask for a recount. Some small margins may dictate a recount per state law. If at that time, the president or former VP want to bring lawsuit, then that is their right.

Senator Mitch McConnell noted that lawsuits are not uncommon defending the president’s efforts. That is true, but what McConnell failed to mention is the president is suing to stop the process. This is after he has staged this course for over six months. What the president is doing is not a surprise at all and was expected. I wish the president would take this much effort to actually govern than campaign.

At the heart of the stopping push is the president does not want the tallies to indicate he lost. My guess is his fragile ego cannot handle that and he feels like his legal battle is more uphill if he is on the bottom. No judge worth any salt will stop a normal process from occurring. Of course, we do have a president who acts abnormally.

So, what can we do about? Breathe in, breathe out. Repeat.

Keep calm and be patient

The election for president is still being determined, so anyone declaring victory at this point is premature. I was hoping to avoid a situation where the president did what he did early this morning – declare victory, insist the counting be stopped and crying foul in the process.

This is the worst outcome that could have occurred, giving a window to the corrupt and deceitful president to be, well, corrupt and deceitful. The people on the ground are trying to get it right, doing what the president fails to do – their job in a competent and honest fashion.

It should be noted Fox News host Chris Wallace and former Republican governor Chris Christie have both chastised Trump for his premature celebration. The outcome is still unknown, with Michigan and Pennsylvania having around 25% or more of their counts outstanding. Wisconsin is leaning narrowly Biden’s way, with absentee ballots in two Democrat leaning towns left to count.

Nevada is also leaning Biden’s way, but still has more counts left. In fact, if Biden carries Nevada, Wisconsin and Michigan, that will put him at 270 votes, without counting Pennsylvania. I don’t know the hold-ups in North Carolina and Georgia, but those look like Trump wins.

Frankly, I was hoping to avoid this being so close. I am disappointed in my home state of North Carolina and surprised how Ohio and Florida went. Trump is doing what he was expected to do, even after lying and saying he would not until the votes are counted. His illicit actions over the last six months having been staging for this very moment.

So, if he ends up winning after the votes are all counted then he wins. Yet, we still are in the fourth quarter of this election, so we need to stay calm and be patient.