Friday, September 18, 2020

The 2016 Presidential Election

 I expect that I probably don't need to tell you how many times in the last 20 years, and last 4 years, I've contemplated the awfulness of democracy in the United States. We elect the president through an antiquated system that throws far too much power to less populous states. The number of people in Congress was limited back in the early 20th century, so that the number of electors in no way reflects the current population distribution. (There's an article about the Electoral College at, if you want more details.)

Al Gore won the popular vote in 2000 by about a half-million votes. Hillary Clinton won the popular vote in 2016 by nearly three million votes. She lost the Electoral College owing to fewer than 80,000 votes for Trump in three states, of which at least one had serious voter suppression issues. I want to also mention that the Republicans in the Senate collectively received ~24M fewer votes than their Democratic opponents. None of this is democratic.

Consider what the last few years have been like:

  • Mitch McConnell holding a vacant Supreme Court seat open in hopes of a Republican victory.
  • Two new conservative justices appointed; Merrick Garland never even getting a vote.
  • Rollbacks of environmental protections.
  • Russian attacks on the 2016 and 2020 elections.
  • The widespread replacement of career civil servants with cronies.
  • An astounding degree of corruption.
  • The Attorney General acting as the president's lawyer, not our lawyer.
  • 200,000 Americans dead of the coronavirus.
  • Attacks on LGTBIQA+ protections and people.
And now Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who should have retired during the Obama Administration, is gone, and there is a good chance that we'll have yet another conservative justice on the Supreme Court. 

This isn't the will of the people, and, again, don't ever tell me the parties are the same. And don't ever tell me that the tyranny of the minority is a good thing.

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