Voters rejected Trump’s big lie, and dealt a blow to democracy

Today we discuss liars, deniers, and standing over the abyss.

Wow, what an election!

In fact. Something in the midterm results to please everyone. Republicans took control of the House of Representatives. Democrats retained control of the Senate.

At any moment now I expect the clouds to part and a choir of heavenly angels to break out in song.


Well, forget about the heavenly choir. But there has been some seriously good news from this scathing election cycle: all the bad stuff he did not do bite.

Such as?

There were no major glitches in casting or counting tens of millions of ballots.

There was no political violence. It’s sad to have to take that into consideration, but that’s where we’re at these days.

Perhaps most importantly, voters have rejected many high-profile candidates who have told the “big lie” about the stolen 2020 election or who have set out to hijack the ballot machinery so they can manipulate the outcome of future elections.

or both.

Fortunately, with one notable exception, most of these defeated candidates accepted their loss rather than emulate the Republican incumbent, ex-President Trump. The thing out is Arizona Gov. loser Carrie Lake, who appears to be testing Trump’s running mate in the 2024 election by threatening a baseless lawsuit and proving she can irresponsibly ignore facts and act irresponsibly.

“As expected, this type of behavior was less common than we had feared,” said Brendan Nyhan, a professor of government at Dartmouth College and co-founder of Bright Line Watch, a group that monitors the state of American democracy. “It is an important step forward.”


Let’s start with the score in many countries that have been a battleground. These are the ones who will likely have a major role in determining the 2024 presidential campaign.

In Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, as well as Arizona, holdout candidates for election to governor have been rejected by voters. This is important because it is up to the governor to certify the election results in his state. The refusal to accept the outcome of the 2020 presidential race in the face of incontrovertible evidence demonstrated a willingness on the part of these conniving GOP candidates to sabotage future elections they don’t like.


Don’t take my words seriously. While running for governor of Wisconsin, Tim Michaels vowed that winning Republicans would “never lose another election” in that still hard-to-fight state.

This is not kosher.

no not like that.

I’ve also seen Big Lie supporters lose Senate races in Arizona, Nevada, and New Hampshire. This is important because it is up to Congress to certify the outcome of the presidential election, which is what the January 6 rebels, with Trump’s encouragement, have been trying to prevent.


Remarkably, voters rejected the nomination of a number of Republicans for the position of Secretary of State, a position that oversees elections in most parts of the country. A victory would have allowed vandals not only to try to change the rules and make voting more difficult—for example, by canceling mail-in ballots or erecting barriers to participation—but also to potentially manipulate the results in favor of their preferred candidates.

Fortunately, election deniers have lost Secretary of State races in swing states like Arizona, Nevada, and Michigan as well as Democratic-leaning Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, and Vermont.

So was talk of “democracy on the brink” exaggerated?

I won’t say that. The threat was real. It was essential for voters to understand the risks of the midterm elections.

Obviously, many have. More than 4 in 10 of those interviewed in an Associated Press poll said they considered the future of democracy a pressing concern, right after inflation. This helps explain why the Democrats did better than expected and defeated many Republicans who had embraced Trump and rejected the election.

Look at it this way: If there was a gas leak inside a house and you warned someone to light a match inside, would you say the warning was “exaggerated” because there was no explosion?

I suppose not.

And, to be clear, the results weren’t all positive.

Respondents won races for secretary of state in Alabama, Indiana, South Dakota and Wyoming. While it is unlikely that any of these strongly Republican states will determine the outcome of the 2024 presidential race, this is bad news that raises doubts about the conduct and fairness of the elections in those states.


Also, two disqualified candidates were elected to the Senate, Ted Budd in North Carolina and J.D. Vance in Ohio. In Wisconsin, Sen. Ron Johnson narrowly re-elected even after he planned to field a mock pro-Trump pool of 2020 voters. To Vice President Mike Pence, who had the duty to certify Joe Biden’s victory.

Moreover, dozens of holdout House candidates will soon join dozens of Republicans who voted against certifying President Biden’s victory in 2020. A number of local headhunters have been selected for election oversight positions at the city and county levels.

This is troubling.

that it. Especially with Trump running for a third time and continuing to press his lies about voter fraud and his failed re-election bid.

But on the brighter side, the candidates who could have done the most damage—in positions like governor and secretary of state—were defeated on the battlefields of the most important states.

“It was really troubling to imagine, especially now that Trump is a candidate, someone either willing to lie about what happened in 2020, or someone gullible enough to believe the election was stolen, either holding the election or certifying the results,” said Rick Hasen, a UCLA law professor who administers Democracy Protection Project.

But, as Hassan pointed out, it would be a mistake to act as if the threat to democracy had suddenly disappeared.

“We’ve stepped back a foot off the edge,” he said. “But we’re still on the edge.”

Um, happy Thanksgiving?

yes! happy thanks giving. Let the angels sing!

But be vigilant.

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