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General Interest, Politics, Trump Week in Review

WEEK #199 OF THE TRUMP ERA IN REVIEW, FRIDAY, 10/30/20 TO THURSDAY, 11/5/20

Quote of The Week: “It’s really a contest to see whether or not we can all stand it, right?” ~ President Donald J. Trump, describing his reelection campaign, while inadvertently encapsulating America’s past 4 years.

Quote of The Week: “It’s really a contest to see whether or not we can all stand it, right?” ~ President Donald J. Trump, describing his reelection campaign, while inadvertently encapsulating America’s past 4 years.

And just like that, it was over. Well, sort of, maybe, most likely, but almost definitely, over. Or at least there is now a definite expiration date in sight, January 20, 2021. The Trump Era was voted out of office this week, but only by 4-1/2 million votes and an Electoral victory for Joe Biden that was still not 100% certain by the end of Week #199 of the Interminable Trump Era.

Both candidates worked and traveled tirelessly the last few days of the campaign, Trump in his super-spreader crowded rallies as if Covid-19 never happened (killing at least 700 of his supporters in the process), Biden in his socially distanced press conferences and drive-in rallies, both of them talking about all the crazy dysfunction and unchecked pandemic deaths in America today, with Trump failing to convince enough voters that today’s dumpster fire of an America is actually a sneak preview of The Joe Biden Apocalypse to come.

All that was missing from Trump’s pitch was that Movie Trailer Guy intoning somberly “In a world where ANTIFA lesbian ninjas defund the police and turn suburban kids into gay gangstas, only one man stands in the way. And this time… it’s personal!”

Week #199 of the Trump Era began on Friday, All Hallows Eve, the day that new Covid cases in America reached a daily total of 100,000 new cases for the first time, and an earthquake devastated Ismir, Turkey, but all anyone was talking about was Tuesday’s upcoming election, and its ramifications for America’s future, with the right wing accusing the mild mannered Joe Biden of being a fire-breathing Commie anarchist hellbent on America’s destruction and making up all kinds of crazy lies about him and his family, while the left wing contented itself with pointing out the obvious; that the America with a destructive madman in charge is what we have right now, and our daily reality and mounting death tolls are not part of a movie trailer of the future.

Turns out, stark reality was a harder sell than might be imagined in a nation that elected a game show host President once, and seemed for a few tense moments on Election Day to be ready to do it again, before Trump’s beloved Electoral College map faded before his eyes like the Cheshire Cat’s grin.

Almost ignored was the news of a struggling trucking company in Kansas getting $700 million bailout loan from (!) the Pentagon, after former Republican Senator Jerry Moran personally lobbied Secretary of the Treasury Mnuchin to intervene to save YRC Worldwide, which lost $100 million last year (before Covid) and was being (!) sued by the Justice Department over claims it defrauded the Federal government for a seven-year period. Somehow, Mnuchin was convinced that “YRC is critical to national security” now.

There was not very far to dig to uncover Administration cronies, since YRC has financial backing from Apollo Global Management, a private equity firm with (surprisesurprise!) close ties to Trump Administration officials, who lent YRC $600 million in 2019. In April, Trump tapped YRC’s chief executive, Darren Hawkins, to serve on a (!) coronavirus economic task force, and in January, he nominated the company’s former chief executive, William Zollars, to the (!) United States Postal Service’s board of governors, for those of us interested in connecting dots. Basically the Feds guaranteed Apollo Global’s loan, made up their $100 million in losses, and recruited henchmen employed to undermine both our pandemic response and the 2020 Election from its ranks. On our dime, thankyouverymuch.

On Saturday, the most trusted man in the country, Doctor Anthony Fauci, characterized America’s preparedness for the new and deadlier wave of Covid-19 now ravaging the country by saying about the Federal Government; “You could not possibly be positioned more poorly.” His stark assessment was seconded by Stanford University, which released a detailed report of their study tracking Covid infections caught at Trump’s unsafe rallies, and placed the number at 30,000 infections and 700 deaths, even before the 2 dozen equally unsafe super-spreader events he would conduct in the campaign’s final few days.

That afternoon in Texas, there was a blockade of a Biden campaign tour bus, when a group of yahoos in pickup trucks, waving guns, flying Trump flags, yelling obscenities and calling themself “The Trump Train” tried to run the bus off the highway at high speed. Naturally, Trump later praised these thugs, which set in motion similar “Trump Trains” all over the country, blocking roads, bridges and urban plazas because… what? None of them were able to come up with a reasonable explanation for their actions, as there was no specific incident that precipitated their “protests.”

No Trumper, however, seems to protest being left in the cold, and in Butler, Pennsylvania on Saturday evening, Trump did it again, leaving thousands of rally attendees stranded in freezing weather, miles from their cars, with none of the promised shuttle buses in sight, the one place where a Trump Train of MAGA enthusiasts in large vehicles might be a welcome sight.

On Sunday, business owners in Washington DC began preparing for Election Day. No, not by sprucing themselves up and running Election Day Sales, but by boarding themselves up in case of rioting, taking their cue from Third world business owners everywhere at regime-changing time, and from Trump himself, who ordered his minions to add another “non scalable” wall around a White House that is already triple-barricaded, in the grand tradition of besieged dictators everywhere.

And speaking of ex-Senators cashing in on American misery, on this day we were made to feel secure in the knowledge that one Rick Santorum, former Republican Senator from Pennsylvania, will not be needing food stamps and Section 8 Housing after all, as it was revealed he was “granted an ownership stake” (bribed) in something called Plasma Technologies LLC, which, thanks to his earnest lobbying, has received millions in Federal “seed money” to test a possible COVID-19-fighting blood plasma technology, currently scientifically frowned upon as a dead-end therapy, with as much as $65 million more on the way, a very lucky break for a company that operates out of (!) its founder’s condo, hopefully of the “luxury condo” variety at a minimum.

Then the Texas Supreme Court denied an effort by Republicans to throw out more than 120,000 votes that had already been cast at drive-through locations, and ordered that this Covid-safe alternative voting method should continue uninterrupted, as Trump’s campaign sent out legal teams all over the country to file lawsuits to either (a) stop the count where Democratic majorities are found, or (b) insist on a full count in Republican-dominated districts, the Election Day running of The Both Ways Express. This was also the day Trump spoke his Administration’s epitaph: “It’s really a contest to see whether or not we can all stand it, right?”

On Monday Trump tried to pay attention to his actual job by praising Navy SEAL Team 6 after they pulled off an amazing and dangerous rescue mission flawlessly in Niger, saving the life of an American hostage while slaying all but one of his captors. Trump got the country wrong, identifying Niger as Nigeria, and SEAL Team 6 is not exactly enamored with Trump since he accused them 2 weeks ago of (!) faking Osama bin Laden’s killing.

And speaking of casting doubts on sterling reputations, Trump warned us again he will deploy squads of lawyers when polls close on Tuesday to dispute the work of our experienced and dedicated poll workers, and intimated to a rally crowd in Florida that he will fire Dr. Fauci after the election, for so consistently raining on his unicorn parade.

Then came Election Day, with 100 million votes already cast by mail-in and early voting, and long lines still forming all over the country, setting voter turnout records in the process. Surprisingly, Trump received almost 3 million more votes than he did in 2016, but Biden got 4.5 million more than him, easily topping the 70 million vote mark, but not immediately reaching the 270 vote Electoral College vote threshold that cements a US Presidential election.

Naturally, as everyone expected he would, Trump declared victory and, right on cue, demanded the counting be stopped, knowing full well that the vast majority of the still-uncounted mail-in and drop-off balots were Democratic votes. As the day wore on, there were some scary moments when it looked like Trump might pull off another Electoral College fluke and win it by the skin of his teeth again, as this year’s polling proved to be as bad as it was in 2016.

Biden responded to the atmosphere of hysteria and doubt exactly as one hoped he would, very calmly explaining that patience and faith in our system is required, let us allow the process to unfold unimpeded as it was designed, and by that process every vote will be counted and that Democrats will all abide by the results. Biden knew of course that he was in the catbird seat, and gave Trump his very first lesson in gracious victory.

Oh, and the 800-Pound Gorilla In The Room also voted that day when Coronavirus Testing cast 92,660 votes for Covid-19 on Election Day, a day when Trump could have used those 700 erstwhile Trump voters who are pushing up daisies now instead of pulling levers.

Trump began Wednesday morning in the wee small hours, proclaiming victory like a drunk forgetting what year he was toasting on New Year’s Eve, sleep-deprived and half crazed, making bizarre claims and accusations with no basis in reality, answering the hypothetical question on everyone’s mind in the affirmative: “If you woke Trump up in the middle of the night, could he still spew a string of crazy lies?”

Meanwhile, America woke up on Wednesday morning to a real nail biter, until the numbers began to swing heavily towards Joe Biden, leaving Trump no option but… to sue. Apparently his legal budget and personnel is stretched to the max, since the crack legal team he sent to Philadelphia consisted of (!) his son Eric, who is not an attorney, and Rudy Giuliani, who is an attorney, and therein lies the problem.

All day long, results poured in and the expected happened, that most of the mail-in ballots were Democratic votes, and Biden supporters breathed easier, while Trump supporters grew uncharacteristically silent save for isolated outbursts and demonstrations. Biden continued to exude confidence but to counsel patience before declaring victory, as the Secret Service began protecting Biden as if he were already the President.

Trump of course, went completely off his rocker all day long, making crazy accusations and lying outrageous lies, and even (!) “called dibs” on Pennsylvania’s Electoral College votes. Must be one of those Article 2 things he keeps talking about that give him all kinds of powers “to do whatever I want.”

Let’s not forget Trump’s Fixer getting in on the action, as William Barr’s Justice Department told federal prosecutors in an email early on Wednesday that “the law allowed them to send armed federal officers to ballot-counting locations around the country to investigate potential voter fraud,” adding that “the statute does not prevent armed federal law enforcement persons from responding to, investigate, or prevent federal crimes at closed polling places or at other locations where votes are being counted.”

Thursday morning found the Election still undecided, but with Biden holding a commanding lead in Electoral votes as well as a steady 4.5 million more popular votes. As States thought to be “owned” by Trump flipped steadily to Biden as the mail-in ballots added up, Trump dispatched another legal team, this time to Nevada, in order to stop the vote-counting in Nevada counties. Not all 16 Nevada counties, mind you, just 2 of them, on opposite corners of the State, where the local population happens to lean dangerously Democratic. Funny how that judicious application of the available “oversight personnel” works.

The 800-Pound aGorilla spoke again on Thursday with a staggering 111,368 new Covid cases, and yet neither Trump nor Barr have dispatched any Federal forces against the invisible enemy that cost Trump the election, Coronavirus. Or rather, his lack of doing a damned thing about, even still to this hour.

He was, however, Johnny on The Spot with claiming victory once again, when he commandeered the airwaves briefly to falsely declare “By the legal votes, I won easily” before most TV networks cut him off for “false content” in a time of national crisis, as he went on to accuse the Democrats of “stealing the election,” in one of the most closely-examined and transparent American elections ever held, lying about the vote count, smearing his opponents and attempting to undermine the integrity of an electoral system he can no longer manipulate for his own ends.

While not officially so just yet, it is over for Trump, his crack teams of lawyers just so many Dutch Boys with too few fingers to plug too many holes in too many dikes. No armed Federal officers have been dispatched anywhere, no Boys, Proud, Boogaloo or otherwise, have risen up in armed support of Trump, and no State Election Boards or Federal Judges have caved in to his demands to stop counting legally-cast ballots.

Trump will sue, he will bellow and he will blow his top, but he will be gone soon enough, leaving us with the real question… “why was it so hard to defeat this horrible man, an oafish and irresponsible wannabe tyrant?”

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