Tag Archives: rigged election

Vote recount = election theft? Hardly!

Donald J. Trump is so adept at tossing out unfounded and unsubstantiated allegations it’s getting difficult to zero in on matters deserving of comment.

But here’s one that does. The president has tweeted an allegation of electoral theft in Florida — without any evidence, quite naturally — because officials there have ordered a recount of ballots in the races for U.S. senator and for governor.

Democrats and Republicans are locked in vise-tight battles for both offices. Trump now has warned of possible theft of the election moments after the recounts were declared.

Hey, he’s a pro at this kind of fear-mongering. Remember how he contended that “millions of illegal aliens” voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016, accounting for her nearly 3 million vote lead in the popular vote?

America is still waiting for proof of that allegation, Mr. President.

He once warned of a “rigged election” were he to lose the 2016 presidential contest. Hah! He won that election, but hasn’t said a disparaging word about the allegation over whether Russian interference might have “rigged” the results in his favor.

How about letting the recount proceed, Mr. President. We don’t need to hear another word from you on whether there’s any “theft” involved. If the Republicans end up winning the Senate seat and the governorship, at least they will have ensured that all the ballots are counted. The same thing will hold true as well even if the Democrats emerge victorious.

That’s how the system works.

Blast the leadership, you blast ‘rank and file,’ too

Donald Trump seeks to cherry pick his targets of scorn.

Such as the FBI and the Department of Justice. The president has been blasting the smithereens out of the “leadership” at the FBI and and at DOJ. But, oh, he says the “rank and file” are great.

His Twitter tirades make me yawn most of the time. However, I often cannot get past the idiocy of some of his messages.

We are witnessing a virtually unprecedented skirmish between the president and the nation’s elite law enforcement community. When the president assails the leadership of the FBI and the DOJ he infers — perhaps unwittingly — that the rank and file are carrying out the policies established by incompetent/crooked/biased leadership.

We are witnessing an intolerable slandering of professional law enforcement officials who do their jobs to the best of their abilities.

It’s not the first time Trump has trashed the troops on the front line of their professions.

He did the same thing to local election officials when he alleged without a scintilla of proof that “millions of illegal immigrants” voted for Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2016, giving her the nearly 3 million popular vote margin she scored over the president. Before he actually won the election, the GOP presidential candidate suggested that a Clinton victory would be the result of a “rigged election.” Again, he managed to defame the hardworking local election officials who perform their duties with diligence, dignity and distinction.

Trump has slandered the media, too, in the same way. When he embarks on his “fake news” mantra, singling out individuals and specific news outlets, he scars all the rest of the media. He then tells us the only media outlets he trusts are those that decline to report news that he deems to be “negative.” In Trump World, “negative” equals “fake.” If the news isn’t positive, it’s untrue — as Trump views it through his bizarre prism.

Here we are now, with the president of the United States denigrating, disparaging and disrespecting the finest law enforcement establishment on Earth.

Never mind his thinly veiled equivocation that the “rank and file are great,” but that he’s targeting only the leadership.

He is denigrating all the professionals at every level with his dangerous tweets and other public pronouncements.

This man is a menace.

Hillary need not heed activists’ plea to challenge election


Activists, by definition, I suppose are those who cannot let certain things go.

Their belief in their correctness makes them a bit frenzied in their desire to achieve a desired result.

Thus, we hear that some political activists are encouraging defeated presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton to challenge the election results in three key battleground states in an effort to overturn Donald J. Trump’s Electoral College victory.

Don’t do it, Mme. Secretary.


The three states in question are Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan. Clinton lost all three of them to Trump — although Michigan hasn’t yet been called officially for the president-elect, as it’s still determined to be too close to call.

According to the Daily Intelligencer: “Hillary Clinton is being urged by a group of prominent computer scientists and election lawyers to call for a recount in three swing states won by Donald Trump, New York has learned. The group, which includes voting-rights attorney John Bonifaz and J. Alex Halderman, the director of the University of Michigan Center for Computer Security and Society, believes they’ve found persuasive evidence that results in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania may have been manipulated or hacked. The group is so far not speaking on the record about their findings and is focused on lobbying the Clinton team in private.”

This would be a futile exercise. It also would be virtually unprecedented. Moreover, how long would it take to prove such an event occurred and how much damage could such a probe do our political system if the plaintiffs fail to make the case?

I feel the need to remind these activists of other close elections in which the loser chose to let the results stand. The most fascinating example occurred in 1960. Vice President Richard Nixon lost the presidential election to Sen. John F. Kennedy by fewer than 150,000 votes nationally, out of more than 60 million ballots cast. Questions arose about the vote totals in Cook County, Ill., which Kennedy won handily and which helped tip Illinois into the Democrat’s column.

Nixon didn’t challenge the result. He chose instead to let it stand. Kennedy went on to take the oath of office, over the expressed anger of the GOP activists who wanted Nixon to make an issue of an outcome that didn’t square with their desire.

Hillary lost the election under the rules set forth by the Founding Fathers. Even those of us who dislike the outcome ought to be able to accept it.

Just as many of us said in dismissing Trump’s assertion of a “rigged” election, I don’t believe that is what produced the stunning result.

The ‘system’ elected Donald Trump


The irony of the 2016 presidential election outcome is too good to let go.

Donald J. Trump bitched continually about the possibility of losing the presidential election to a “rigged electoral system.” He even threatened to forgo accepting the result if he came up on the short end of the count.

Then he won. He was elected president of the United States with a healthy Electoral College majority. It stands currently at 290 electoral votes, with more likely to come in once they declare that he won in Michigan, which is still “too close to call.”

But wait! Hillary Rodham Clinton has collected nearly a million more actual votes than Trump. That number is likely to increase once they finish counting all the scattered ballots … and there appear to be many more to be counted in California.

So …

As someone has pointed out already on social media, the people voted for Hillary, but the system elected Trump.

Hey, isn’t the electoral system ‘rigged’?


This just in.

A “rigged, crooked and corrupt” political system has just elected Donald J. Trump as the next president of the United States of America.

The president-elect his own self made that declaration for months while he campaigned for the office he has just won.

He made the assertions, of course, while the polls showed Hillary Rodham Clinton leading in the horse race to the Oval Office. Trump wasn’t buying it. Not only that, he said the system was “rigged” against him and that he possibly wouldn’t accept the result if Clinton won the election.

She didn’t. Trump did.

Did he benefit from a “rigged” system?

Well, I didn’t believe the system was “rigged” when Clinton was leading. I don’t believe it is “rigged” now that Trump has won.

I think one of the unity messages Trump needs to deliver is to assure Americans that the system that elected him is on the up-and-up.

Perhaps an apology, too, might be in order to the local election officials who take their jobs seriously and are committed to protecting the integrity of our political system.

Do political junkies have identifying marks?

In this Sept. 29, 2016, photo, local residents receive their ballots at the Polk County Election Office on the first day of early voting in Des Moines, Iowa. Many Americans have at least some doubts about votes in this year's presidential election will be counted accurately, and a significant number are concerned about the possibility of interference in the election by foreign hackers. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

PIEDMONT, S.D. — I’m wondering if I have some kind of mark on my forehead that identifies me as a “political junkie.”

Here’s what happened at a convenience store in what more than likely is Trump Country.

I picked up a copy of the Rapid City Journal and then met a young man standing in a short line waiting to pay for some items.

“Hey, the election is almost here,” he said, then he asked, “Have you voted?:

“No,” I said. “I don’t believe in voting early.”

“What the heck,” he said. “Our votes won’t be counted anyway.”

“Aw, yes they will,” I replied.

“Who do you think will win?” the young man asked. “Hillary,” I said.

“Do you want her to win?” he asked. “I just told you who I think will win, so I will just leave it at that,” I responded.

Other than the first takeaway I gleaned from this chance meeting — the one about any potential identifying marks — there’s another one.

Donald J. Trump’s repeated — and ridiculous — assertions about a “rigged election” seems to have taken root in the skull of at least one young voter.

As we left the store, I encouraged the young man to vote — despite his doubts that they’ll count his ballot.

Trump feeds conspiracy narrative


Donald J. Trump more than likely elicited cheers across the nation in the living rooms of those who believe as he does about the integrity of the national electoral process.

He did so by feeding into that hideous narrative — which he has initiated — that the presidential election is rigged against him.

Fox News’s Chris Wallace, the moderator of tonight’s third and final debate between Trump and Hillary Rodham Clinton, asked him straight away: Will you accept the results of the election if voters choose Hillary Clinton?

His answer was just short of a direct “no!” He said he’ll look at it at the time. Trump, the Republican nominee, effectively admitted on national television that he doesn’t trust the system and he won’t commit to honoring the results and continuing this nation’s long tradition of promoting peaceful transition of power from one president to the next one.

My major takeaway from the debate tonight was that the GOP nominee demonstrated — yet again! — just how unfit he is for the office he is seeking.

Donald Trump is pandering to the ill-founded fears of those who have swallowed the bait he has tossed them that the system, the media, the powers that be all are conspiring to defeat him and to elect Hillary Clinton.

As the legendary TV character Army Col. Sherman T. Potter would say: mule muffins!

Trump likely to lose … but might not accept it


I’m glad to be not alone in fearing what might happen on Election Day, which occurs on Nov. 8.

Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump could lose the election to Democratic nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton in a big way.

He might get buried in an Electoral College landslide. For that matter, it could even be a popular vote landslide.

But just a little while ago, Trump laid down a frightening notion.

He might not accept defeat the way losing candidates traditionally have done. Remember when he said the “only way I am going to lose” is if the election is “rigged.” He said the only way for “Crooked Hillary” to win is to fix it so she gets more votes than he does.

What’s going to happen, then, if — after the news organizations declare Clinton the winner — and Trump fails to make the phone call to the president-elect, offering his congratulations and then stands before his supporters to concede defeat?

Eli Stokols, writing for Politico, thinks it’s entirely possible that Trump won’t concede. He won’t acknowledge what the rest of the world would have just witnessed.


Stokols writes: “Among the values most necessary for a functioning democracy is the peaceful transition of power that’s gone on uninterrupted since 1797. What enables that is the acceptance of the election’s outcome by the losers,” said Steve Schmidt, the GOP operative who was McCain’s campaign strategist in 2008.

Trump’s insistence that a “rigged” election would result in his defeat seems to put that tradition into imminent danger.

As an American who rather likes political tradition, I see this as a potentially terrible development.

Again, as Stokols writes: “The damage this is going to do to various institutions is going to be long term,” said Charlie Sykes, a prominent conservative radio host in Milwaukee who has been one of the country’s most outspoken and consistent anti-Trump voices. “How do you restore civil discourse after all of this? He is a postmodern authoritarian who’s in the process of delegitimizing every institution — the media, the ballot box — that can be a check on him.”

Are you scared yet? I am.