And so it ends… and begins

Was watching the news this morning figuring that, since Joe Biden wasn’t formally declared the winner of the 2020 Presidential race yesterday, they had to do it this morning, right?

Over on MSNBC, I suspect they were thinking the same because they had their Morning Joe crew in for a Saturday session -they are usually on from Monday to Friday- and they remained there for the entire morning even though they usually end their show by 9:00 am.

By 12 noon practically on the dot, statistical whiz Steve Kornaki (I really, really hope he’s getting some much needed sleep at this hour!) reported that a new batch of results came in which bumped Biden’s lead over Trump in Pennsylvania over 30,000 votes and, literally the very next moment…

The BBC quickly called the election for Biden and, soon after, so too did CNN.

It was finally done.

In the hours since Pennsylvania put Biden “over the top”, Nevada has been declared as well for Biden, bringing his total electoral college number to 279 (270 was needed), which excludes Arizona and Georgia.

In Georgia, Biden has the lead by just north of 7000 votes and may well take that state. As for Arizona, it was declared early on for Biden by the Associated Press and (of all stations) Fox but there is some hesitancy by others to declare it a Biden win even though at the moment he has a little more than 20,000 vote advantage. The reason being is that there is at least a statistical possibility Trump might gain enough of the remaining votes to tie or go up on Biden in the state.

Not that it matters.

Regardless, the two remaining undeclared states, North Carolina and Alaska. are currently trending toward Trump and likely will be won by him.

If Biden does take Arizona, he will have earned 306 electoral college votes, wildly enough this is the same number of EC votes that Trump had when he won back in 2016.

Once Biden was finally declared the winner, I felt an overwhelming sense of… relief.

While I know there are too many things going on in the world for a Biden win to change things overnight for the better, I truly feared we couldn’t survive another four years of Trump’s craziness. It seems like every day we had another story which made me shake my head and wonder how anyone could support him and his… uh… governance and its corruption, lies, and belligerence.

To those that supported Trump, I’m not the type to wallow in your pain or rub it in even as I did see plenty of insults hurled from them in the direction of the “other side”.

Trump’s whole act was to build an “us versus them” mentality among his people and, frankly, it was a disgusting display but not a unique one. Trump, sadly, is the result of too many years of right wing media bashing the other side over and over again and cultivating an audience of people who fear the “other” rather than, you know, look into their ideas and realize they might not be so abhorrent as they have been led to believe they are.

I’ve written this before and I’ll reiterate it here: I’ve experienced just about every type of government in one way or another through my lifetime.

I was born behind the communist iron curtain and my parents, with at the time two kids in tow, fled that oppressive regime. We lived in Canada for a while, what could be described as a “socialist” country, before moving to and living in Venezuela in the mid-1970’s and into the early 1980’s. While today Venezuela is a left wing dictatorship, back then it was very much a right winger’s wet dream, a country with almost no regulation, taxes, and Catholic ideology. When that went bad, they moved in the complete opposite side.

Finally, I settled in the United States and I felt for a long while it was the best of all worlds.

But over the last few years, the rise of this right wing propaganda machine has worried me.

Perhaps the fever finally breaks, but it won’t be easy.

Trump has not conceded the election nor do I expect him to anytime soon. He will sick his lawyers on the electoral process and, though it seems a waste of time, it is his right as a citizen to do so.

What I’m most curious about is how the Republicans react now that they know Trump is on his way out. As the saying goes, do the rats abandon the ship now, finally? Or do they still cover for him while he surely tries to hold onto the power which will soon be gone?

As I said above, this represents an end and a beginning.

We’ll see where things go from here.