Just ahead of Trump's presser in Philly, ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, the Associated Press and Fox News have all called the election:
Joe Biden will become the 46th president of the United States, CNN projects, after a victory in the state where he was born put him over the 270 electoral votes needed to win.
The alleged President-elect has allegedly issued a statement:
I am honored and humbled by the trust the American people have placed in me and in Vice President-elect Harris.
In the face of unprecedented obstacles, a record number of Americans voted. Proving once again, that democracy beats deep in the heart of America.
With the campaign over, it's time to put the anger and the harsh rhetoric behind us and come together as a nation.
It's time for America to unite. And to heal.
"Joe Biden is a unifier," says Nancy Pelosi. If that's so, it seems odd that, in the small number of precincts that decided the election, Democrats needed to steal it.
As I laid out in this weekend's Mark Steyn Show, election fraud in American cities has deep roots - far deeper than anywhere else in the west - and everything they're doing in Philadelphia, for example, they've been doing since the nineteenth century. Biden's biggest margins of victory (why, in some enthusiastic precincts he won 100 per cent of the vote!) are in the old familiar places that surprise no one... In the nation at large, there was a modest red wave - but not in a half-dozen Democrat fiefdoms in purple states that take days to count and whose poll workers suspend counting arbitrarily until new boxes of ballots are delivered at three in the morning. To reprise my Thought for the Day from the late Reverend Canaan Banana of Zimbabwe:
While you were sleeping, we helped ourselves.
~In Michigan, the legislature is today holding an "oversight" hearing after a county software system accidentally gave 6,000 Trump votes to Biden:
Earlier Friday news broke that a software glitch in the vote-counting software used by 48 Michigan counties allegedly produced a very significant glitch in at least one of them.
In Antrim County, the software glitch switched 6,000 votes from Republicans, including President Trump, to Democrats. The county clerk, a Democrat, caught the issue and it has been corrected in that county. Antrim County uses Dominion Voting Systems...
There's an oddly Canadian name for you.
But wait! In America there's no end to malfunctioning election software:
In Oakland County, another glitch temporarily toppled an incumbent Republican. County Commissioner Adam Kochenderfer narrowly lost in the initial count, only to have a glitch discovered Thursday that had switched over 1,200 Republican votes to Democrat. Once the votes were properly attributed, Commissioner Kochenderfer went from loser by about 100 votes to winner by over 1,100. According to the Royal Oak Tribune, Oakland County uses election software from Hart Intercivic. Hart uses a proprietary system called Verity. Eleven Michigan counties use Hart's systems.
So 59 of 83 counties are using unreliable software that, at least in one case, changed the result of the race.
Just out of curiosity, are there any instances of these excitingly sophisticated novel software systems transferring votes from Democrats to Republicans? Or does the mysterious "glitch" only go one way?
My idea of an election software system is a school gym of spry widows and spinsters with a sprinkling of retired bank managers counting paper ballots. The multiplicity of competing software systems only makes a laughably crap system crapper.
~Nevertheless, the Trump campaign's army of lawyers faces an uphill battle. Philadelphia is a corrupt swamp where election integrity goes to die ...but as the coolly forensic Stephen McIntyre points out:
There is only one PA county where Trump dramatically improved Republican - Democrat margin. Without overthinking it, take a guess which one before looking at the answer...
Trump reduced the deficit in Philadelphia by ~44K votes from the 2016 deficit vs Hillary.
Unfortunately for the President, in five counties, four of which are Philly suburbs, there was strikingly high turnout that gave Biden 124,000 votes over Hillary in 2016.
Whether or not you buy that, it requires a sharper argument than Trump's lawyers are currently making on the TV. These joints have been running dirty elections for a century and a half, so in a certain sense stolen votes are what a court might be inclined to look on as "settled law".
To avoid the pit of hell he and seventy million American voters are now being lowered into, Trump needed to win (in my coinage of sixteen years ago) "beyond the margin of lawyer". As a near-decade-long defendant in the toilet of the DC Superior Court, I would not wish to bet the fate of the nation on the caprices of judges.
~There will be time for the usual bloodletting later, but, to go back to Steve McIntyre's analysis, there seems little doubt that in Pennsylvania, as in Michigan and Wisconsin, Trump came up short with bluecollar whites in jurisdictions where the black/Hispanic outreach was not enough to compensate. As I argued on the air a few months back, the Trump base is a coalition between Trump (the millions who love his personality, mainly because he punches back) and Trumpism (a set of policy positions on immigration, China, etc, that wouldn't even penetrate the public discourse without his larger-than-life persona shoving them down the media's gullet). Me back in the summer:
Trump has two bases – there's the Trump base, people who like the fifteen-minute shtick about ramps and leather shoes and love the Tweets; and there's the Trumpism base, people who want an end to mass immigration and a decoupling from China. They're a coalition: the Trump base can't win without the Trumpism base, because his personality alone is problematic; but the Trumpism base can't win without Trump, because only that size of personality can push through the media bias to put Trumpism policies into the national conversation.
The Trumpism base was a little underserved (to put it mildly) by the Brad Parsehole/Jared Kushner campaign - and that may have proved fatal in Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.
Politics is brutal. Between his Election Night appearance and the lonelier press conference a couple of days later, Trump seemed all but abandoned. Corey Lewandowski, who was there from the start, will be there till the end, but Mitch McConnell et al are already moving on. If Biden pulls this off, there will be moves to prosecute Trump - and how many Administration officials will be willing to join those pathetic turncoats like John Kelly and Mad Dog Mattis eager to testify against him?
On Fox News the hosts, whether consciously or not, are already referring to Trump in the past tense - when they mention him at all, which (Hannity aside) is less and less day by day. And those who once praised him, incessantly, are in indecent haste to bury him:
Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears;
I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.
The evil that men do lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones;
So let it be with Caesar. The noble Brutus
Hath told you Caesar was ambitious:
If it were so, it was a grievous fault,
And grievously hath Caesar answer'd it.
And grievously hath Trump answer'd it.
As I said on our weekend show, I am all in favor of him running in 2024 and becoming the Grover Cleveland of the twenty-first century - especially when the alternative is Nikki Haley.
But keep your eyes on the prize - which is to save and advance Trumpism.
~Steyn Club members are welcome to weigh in in the comments. But this is not an "open thread", so please stay on point.
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 eighteen 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 prospect of election fraud and attendant litigation without end, there's no better cure than 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 post-election goes south, you'll surely be grateful for a break from Kamala.