Joe Biden: The Decency Is the Point

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As Never Trumper Rick Wilson put it early on in this four-year nightmare: Everything Donald Trump touches dies– or #ETTD, as the hashtag had it. For now, the wretched president manages to kill much of the joy Democrats should have over the historic Joe Biden and Kamala Harris victory. We’re still waiting for big news outlets to declare the race for Biden-Harris hours after it became clear that Trump lost in Arizona, Nevada, Georgia, and especially Pennsylvania, considering where the stellar ballots are. (Even in Trump counties in all four states, mail-ins are mostly coming from Democrats, and they’re gradually condemning him.)

Despite the near certainty of that victory, many of us remain in a defensive crouch waiting for the onslaught of lies and complaints to obscure the legitimate outcome of this long race. They may not succeed, but they can make it a very long month.

Fortunately, most of the media don’t have it. When the remarkably troubled president came out during the network’s news hours to tell lies about “illegal votes” on Thursday night, almost everyone cut off and instead began immediately investigating him rather than just spreading his harmful delusions. CNN fact-checker Daniel Dale tweeted, “I’ve read or seen all of Trump’s speeches since 2016. This is the most dishonest speech he has ever made.”

This is the good news: unlike in 2000, when networks and news outlets seemed confused by the Florida recount and GOP claims were too often being mimicked while systematically overlooking the central story – the disenfranchisement of the state’s black voters in County after county that led to Al Gores Probable “loss” – this time they don’t seem to fall for the GOP’s fraud.

There’s more good news: just before dawn, Biden took a slim lead in Georgia thanks to the ballots from Clayton County, home of civil rights icon John Lewis, that were not seen that day. When I saw that fact, that happy omen, I realized that Lewis wants us all to find joy in this moment. So choose the joy this weekend – and worry about the GOP’s handicap on Monday.

Here’s why: It looks like Biden will win decisively. He is well on his way to conquering the electoral college by the same lead Trump had from 306 to 262 four years ago. Just instead of losing the referendum by nearly 3 million, as Trump did with Hillary Clinton, Biden will likely end in a more than 6 million referendum once all of the outstanding California ballots are received. He did it by reshaping the “blue wall” of Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania, which Hillary Clinton narrowly lost – but he also apparently won two states that Democrats have long dreamed of going blue: Arizona and Georgia.

Former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams must be one of the first people Biden thanks. Not only has she worked tirelessly to overcome voter suppression and apparently colored Georgia blue – even if she lost her race by nearly 55,000 votes in 2018 – but also created a situation where Democrats can still take over the Senate. The two Democratic Senate challengers, Jon Ossoff and Rev. Raphael Warnock, headed for a runoff election in January with the GOP incumbents. Their win would land the Democrats in a 50:50 tie that would be broken by apparently elected Vice President Kamala Devi Harris.

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