How the Republicans can grow stronger in a post-Trump America
Portrayed as feckless buffoons in popular culture, mailmen are now regarded as heroes for their role in helping to defeat Donald Trump.
As bizarre as the Presidential election of 2020 was- perfectly fitting for how bizarre the year of 2020 has been- the craziest part is that the madness was actually somewhat predictable. In fact, let’s give credit where credit is due- Bernie Sanders pretty much called it before the whole thing took place (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyGr_huFMh4&feature=youtu.be&t=178). As a self-described “conservatarian”- or perhaps member of the Far Right now, since I like to breathe air as freely as nature intended me to- it’s important to acknowledge good points from the opposition, especially if I hope they might exchange the same courtesy to me. This is why it’s necessary for those of us who, like it or not, are identified as “The Right” need to focus on ways to move forward, instead of just fuming about a process that we might see as skewed, rigged, or even fraudulent. (As of now, I’m only willing to go as far as “skewed”, but I know many others would go much further- there are seventy million of us, after all!)
For starters, it’s important to avoid certain talking points, however alluring they may be, that DON’T support suspicious- let alone fraudulent- activity. A favorite one out there, as this is being written nearly a week after Election Day, is that Donald Trump’s decisive swing state lead evaporated quickly, after mail-in ballots were counted. This news was every bit as predictable as Trump’s volatile reaction to it. As Bernie Sanders pointed out, Democrats tend to mail-in their votes far more than Republicans. On top of that, thanks to the efforts of Democrat party bosses and popular culture (apologies for repeating myself), the mail vote was going to be record setting. As if THAT wasn’t enough, most liberals are now so scared of sharing space with COVID-carrying Republicans, it was always a given that they’d largely be voting from the supposed safety of their homes. By contrast, Republican voters have watched cynical politicians exploit COVID for months, marginalizing their influence in society- be it in their small businesses, their churches, even in the safety of their own neighborhoods. As such, they were always going to vote in person, to minimalize a bureaucracy that they were now convinced was working against them. Given these two polar opposite approaches from an ever-increasingly polarized country, the swings in the swing states made perfect sense.
An even more specious theory being peddled relates to the House and Senate races. Republicans in congress- thankfully, from my point of view- far outperformed expectations. The fact that this happened while Donald Trump still (probably) lost is somehow seen as proof by many that the whole thing was rigged from the start. In a year filled with even sketchier-than-usual behavior from most of our liberal politicians- and sadly, a few so-called “conservative” ones, as well- these results should actually be encouraging. Just because Republicans picked up seats and outperformed expectations, that doesn’t mean they got more votes overall. The Democrats still have a hold on the House of Representatives, and thanks to the States part of “United States of America”, individual senate victories have little to do with the American population’s voting habits as a whole.
But even putting this basic math aside, what TRULY makes this “evidence” totally ridiculous is the motivation behind it. If the election was really a total sham, why in the world would the cheaters deprive Trump, while allowing the dastardly Republicans to make progress in another branch of government? It just doesn’t make any sense.
Something else that The Right should at least start to acknowledge after this election- the fallibility of The Electoral College. Over the past generation, pointing this out has been considered heresy in conservative circles. “The Founding Fathers knew the importance of states’ rights!” they yell indignantly. “In their infinite wisdom, they couldn’t let the mobs of cities determine the President!” Truth be told, the Founding Fathers lived in an agrarian society, where they wanted to make sure that individuals with electoral votes could balance out the will of the people, with the electors’ own wisdom. It was never intended to give a universal advantage to one party over another- which is EXACTLY how it functions now. This isn’t to say that the Electoral College should be scrapped altogether- at least not right away- as Democrats only expressed universal hatred of it when they realized it works against their self-interest. But a system that only gives the Republicans a strong chance of winning when it neutralizes the inner-city vote is not a sustainable one. For a party that now prides itself on being anti-elitist, saying a city vote (read- Democrat) should matter less than a rural one (read- Republican) sounds pretty damn elite to me. A far better solution would be taking the time to convince some of those city Democrats to reconsider their vote. Remember- Rudy Giuliani once did this, with incredible results for New York. Although it will take a lot of work, it can happen again- and not just for a city, but the entire country. (More on that below.)
If none of this is convincing- and I suspect it’s not for most of you- consider that “states’ rights” gives more power of the electoral process to meddlesome governors like Tom Wolf and Gretchen Whitmer. For most conservative readers, that one sentence will likely be more meaningful than the entire previous paragraph. The main takeaway point is that the entire system needs to be overhauled, in a way that is truly fair for all. If Joe Biden really got about five million more votes than Donald Trump, then Joe Biden should be our next President- and vice versa- regardless of which states the votes came from. And if the number of votes does NOT accurately reflect ACTUAL individual voters preferences? Well…then, that needs to be on the table, too.
Now that we’ve gone some hard truths, here are some ways Republicans can turn a Trump loss to their advantage-
Donald Trump is a fighter. He’s always been a fighter, and he likely will be until his last, dying breath- both politically and literally. It’s not a surprise that he’s challenging the *gasp* “cherished norms of our democracy”, as the media types cling to their social media accounts, to express their disgust to the world.
And you know something? Good! Because, in spite of his over-the-top, somewhat reckless declarations- seriously, declaring himself “the winner” outright was NOT his best moment- somebody needs to shine a lot on the increasingly rotting process of our once great institutions. Using COVID spread as an excuse for expanding mail-ins was always a lie, and many of us knew it. But seeing the Trump hating masses dancing in the streets proved it. How afraid can these people truly be of COVID, if they’re all packed in so tightly as they celebrate for hours, perhaps even days? Democrats screamed that Trump was trying to sabotage the postal system, but the truth is, he never NEEDED to- the system was not equipped to handle the massive amounts of mail that this election ultimately required. Elections should never be litigated- something we saw twenty years ago- but that doesn’t mean that those who try to manipulate the process for their own benefit shouldn’t have to answer for their actions, be it a lowly poll worker, or a lockdown-loving governor. And it certainly shouldn’t take so long to count votes, that we don’t have the decisive results within twenty-four hours. The entire voting process has needed to be advanced for a long time. Instead, it took a step backwards this time, which was completely by design. With his shameless personality and desire to pick a fight with those who get in his way, Donald Trump might be uniquely qualified to bring this problem to light.
As for the battle itself, Trump will likely lose. To be honest- and a lot of you are REALLY not going to like this part- that won’t actually be a bad thing at this point. Look, I don’t want to see the Democrats (especially the AOC-wing) try to increase their control over our government. But all post-Eisenhower Republican Presidents were ripped to shreds in their second term. Can you imagine anything less happening to Donald Trump, serving after a DISPUTED ELECTION?! Keep in mind that he’ll soon be in his late seventies, and as impressively energetic as he is, the Presidency takes its toll. Plus, not only is it possible that the Democrats would expand their lead in The House of Representatives, with their favorite target still front-and-center, but all the problems that we have seen- specifically, the riots and lockdown fallout- will only get worse. Perhaps it would have been different, had he won the election outright. But, without a clean victory, many otherwise decent liberals would likely be radicalized by Trump keeping his power through a court victory- similar to the way many of us were radicalized by the selective lockdowns, coupled with the BLM/Antifa intimidation. Remember- we will never change most people’s minds as to what’s really going on out there, but the good news is, we don’t have to. We just have to convince enough of them to gain majority support, and that’s probably not going to happen with Trump remaining in office.
In the near-term, a Trump loss could prove critical to the Republicans keeping the Senate, with two runoff elections in January. If Trump’s legal battles continue until then, this could be nearly impossible, as he will be hogging the spotlight. If that’s all behind us, however, Republicans can be extra motivated, fearing the Democrats gaining full control of the Legislative Branch. (Also, let’s face it- revenge is a great motivator, too!) We’ve seen the great difficulty Trump has had navigating through the final year of his first term. Just imagine what it would look like with Schumer AND Pelosi(‘s replacement?) in full control of Congress. In addition, it’s truly unfortunate that John James of Michigan probably lost, but hopefully he’ll be able to run again in 2022 or 2024. He, along with the rest of the Republicans, will have a better shot with Trump in the rearview.
Last but not least, Donald Trump was NEVER the long-term future of the GOP. Becoming President was likely always going to be the final major act of his illustrious, bombastic life. (Can you imagine if it’s not?!) In the EXTREMELY UNLIKELY event that he manages to dig deep into the core of the earth and pull out a win- which will ONLY be ultra-remotely possible with the help of Trump’s plurality of appointees in the Supreme Court- murder hornets would likely be more kind to him and his supporters, than Democrats and all of their allies. In a post Trump world, however, there’s at least a chance that Republicans can use the best parts of his Presidency to fight back against the Deep State machine that are pointed at all of us. It won’t even matter if the media suddenly manage to de-escalate the threat of COVID, as they have already done on occasion, in the now-familiar pattern of when the Democrats want an excuse to go outside and make noise. The lockdown damage is already baked into our society- ohhh, just you wait- and now Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will have to answer for it.
If The Right has learned anything from him in the past four years, they will not be shy in pointing out to the most vulnerable in our society that THEY are the ones who suffer most with these harmful measures, while the CEOs of Amazon and Google get even richer. The Deep State will fight back- They always do- but they’ll have a much tougher time, without being able to aim it at their favorite human lightning rod. The feckless media will likely try to serve the establishment that they are a part of, but if the GOP plays their cards right, it won’t work this time. To paraphrase another embattled larger-than-life Republican President, they won’t have Donald J. Trump to kick around anymore.
How the Republicans can grow stronger in a post-Trump America