Just in time for the avalanche of Count Every Dimpled Chad! litigation, America's Supreme Court has a ninth vote on the bench: Amy Coney Barrett was sworn in by Clarence Thomas at the White House last night. I'd assumed Republicans would manage to bungle this as they bungle almost everything else, so congratulations are in order. I hope she wears jabots.
The court now has a six-three Republican-nominated majority. Indeed, it is one-third Trump-nominated. But one consequence of the expanded majority is that Chief Justice Roberts will feel more comfortable liberating his inner leftie and voting with the Dem wing. So which rock-ribbed originalist will get to play the Designated Swinger? Neil Gorsuch?
Still, in a judges' republic (a contradiction in terms, as I said to Tucker last week), three new Supremes isn't bad for a first term. Maybe by January 2025 we'll wind up with an all-Trump high court, and then the left might get genuinely interested in letting the people's representatives set public policy.
In other good news, for the first time in a month-and-a-half the polls no-one believes in have produced a single solitary one with a Trump lead: Rasmussen, showing the President up on Biden 48-47. As for what really matters - the Electoral College - my sense is that Trump is up in Florida, North Carolina, Arizona and probably Pennsylvania. Not sure about Michigan, but I find it hard to believe a state can be so masochistic as to vote for the side that brought them Governor Whitmer's Lockdown Without Parole.
Of course, with every day, every tightening of the polls makes less and less difference because more and more people have already voted - 64 million, according to The New York Times - which is over half the likely electorate. And, of those 64 million, half the votes are in the twelve swing states that will decide the election. So it may be that the election has been decided - a week in advance: As of today, in Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, Arizona and Nevada two-thirds of the 2016 electorate has voted; in Texas (ranked as a toss-up state because of transformative immigration useless GOP tosspots neglected for decades) over eighty per cent of the 2016 electorate has already voted.
I will make a small observation as a long-time resident of a once solidly red state that, thanks not only to demographic changes but to seedy grifters like Tom Rath and once iconoclastic media now rudderless and fainthearted, has steadily purpled and blued. Yet I have never seen so few signs for the Dem candidate as I have this presidential season - and indeed on forays over the river have never seen so few in Vermont. The 2004 Kerry/Edwards bumper stickers were still so ubiquitous past the 2006 midterms that one assumed they were standard on certain models of Subaru and as difficult to disable as the passenger-side airbag. But this season I have yet to see a single Biden sticker.
Perhaps it's the Covid. What's the point of a sign when no one's on the road to drive past? What's the point of a bumper sticker when no one's on your tail? Yet the Trump signs are, if anything, more numerous and more prominent than four years ago.
ChiCom-19 is a partisan health issue in the United States, so perhaps it is simply that Democrats believe Cuomo and Newsom and similar cruel masters, and are cowering Biden-like in their basements waiting for the storm to pass in 2023 or whenever. But that would not normally be regarded as conducive to a strong get-out-the-vote campaign.
Against that are the GOP rallies. I don't mean the Trump rallies, but rather the Trumpless rallies. They're out there every day - events that a couple of fellows just decide to put together in their neighborhood. None of these make the news, but they're happening all over the map. Byron York ventured out to the parking lot of Oil & Gas Safety Supply in Washington, Pennsylvania (just a hop-and-a-skip from the Ohio/West Virginia borders) for a "Trump Train" car rally:
The cars from Ohio and West Virginia exited off the interstate, rolled past the Home Depot, then past Oil & Gas, and then, when the last car had passed, the Washington cars joined it, making one massive line of vehicles heading back to St. Clairsville.
There were so many cars â€” organizers estimated the number to be 2,000, many of them with whole families inside â€” that it took a very long time to pass through the lot. As that happened, people honked and waved American flags, and Trump flags, too, and talked about why they think it is critical for the president to be reelected.
As Byron reports, many of those cars had "whole families" inside, but presumably others merely accommodated couples or single drivers. So let's be conservative and estimate it at 4,000 people. That's a big crowd for a candidate event with no candidate, no surrogate, no celebrity endorser. Washington, Pennsylvania is a town of 15,000 people, so getting 4,000 people to turn out for anything is an accomplishment.
For the purposes of comparison, consider a car rally in Philadelphia a couple of days earlier: the Second Coming of Obama played to an audience of two hundred - almost all of them Biden-Harris campaign volunteers - and the returning Messiah stood there in the chill delivering jokes that echoed off dozens of wing mirrors and died in the mirthless silence.
Meanwhile, far away at the other end of the state, a handful of the unglamorous masses put together their own event and attracted twenty times the crowd, and without the aid of a national campaign looted by Brad Parsehole and his chums.
Similar events are taking place every day, all over the map, on a scale never seen before.
The legacy media and the woke social cartel are all in on the official fantasy - that there is a real "candidate" actively "campaigning" and that in a week (or so) the Democrat chad-danglers will have worked their dark arts sufficiently to deliver a landslide that makes the pollsters look non-incompetent.
Against that are pinpricks on the map where an enthused base requires none of the above - no media, no woke billionaires, no Hollywood A-listers, no starry predecessors, no polls, no campaign funds. Just citizens, fired up and proud of it.
Something is happening here.
~Our regular weekly schedule has been a bit disrupted by this week's grueling legal deposition of yours truly, but nevertheless we had a busy weekend at SteynOnline starting with the latest edition of The Mark Steyn Show, covering everything from acronymic sexism to woke generals, and concluding with Tal Bachman on the sewer of Biden corruption. In between came Kathy Shaidle on Vincent Price's foray into Canadian low-budget kids' TV, my Sunday election update, and a weekly song selection pining for the days when you could find a five-and-ten to find a million-dollar baby in. If you were too busy burning down mail-in ballot drop-offs this weekend, I hope you'll want to check out one or three of the foregoing.
We opened The Mark Steyn Club over three years ago, and I'm thrilled by all those SteynOnline supporters across the globe - from Fargo to Fiji, Vancouver to Vanuatu, Surrey to the Solomon Islands - who've signed up to be a part of it. My only regret is that we didn't launch it seventeen years ago, but better late than never. You can find more information about the Club here - and, if you've a pal who might be partial to this sort of thing, don't forget our special Gift Membership.
Oh, and if you're seriously chafing under the lockdown and looting, there's no better way to cock a snook at the lockdown than by booking a berth on our Third Annual Steyn Cruise sailing the Med next year - and with Conrad Black, Michele Bachmann, John O'Sullivan and Douglas Murray among our shipmates. We'll be attempting some seaboard versions of The Mark Steyn Show, Tales for Our Time, our Sunday Poem and other favorite features. If you're minded to give it a go, don't leave it too late: as with most travel and accommodations, the price is more favorable the earlier you book - and, if the lockdown ever does gets totally lifted, why use your newfound freedom of movement just to visit the county fair or see X-Men 47 at the multiplex when you can bestride the world like a cruising colossus?
I'll be back this evening with our Song of the Week and later this week with a brand new Tale for Our Time.