Joe Biden

Does Biden Have a Mandate? Should it Matter?

Like almost every newly elected president, Joe Biden claims he has a mandate. But does he? And should we care?

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President-elect Joe Biden.

 

It is now clear that Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States, despite some last-ditch denialism by Donald Trump. And Biden has already claimed he has a "mandate for action." In this respect, Biden is no different from most other modern presidents. Newly elected presidents routinely claim they have a mandate to implement the policies they ran on. In 2016, Republicans similarly claimed a mandate for Trump, even though the latter won only a razor-thin electoral college victory and lost the popular vote by a substantial margin. But the extent to which Biden really has a mandate is questionable. And we shouldn't attach too much normative significance to it, even if he does.

Biden's pretensions to a mandate are a lot more plausible than Trump's. By the time all the votes are counted, he will have won the popular vote by about 4-5 points, and his wins in key swing states will be by larger margins than Trump's in 2016. Biden is also substantially more popular than the widely despised Trump has ever been.

Nonetheless, it's questionable whether Biden's victory actually proves that he enjoys widespread public support for his policy agenda. Exit polls indicate that some 30% of those who voted for Biden say they did so primarily to oppose Trump (I was one such lukewarm Biden voter myself). These are the people who put Biden over the top, and it is likely that many of them have serious reservations about his agenda. In addition, the Democratic Party seems likely to fall short of a majority in the Senate, and have actually  lost seats in the House of Representatives (where they will retain only a narrow majority). This doesn't seem like an election where the Democrats succeeded in gaining a broad consensus in support of their agenda. If Biden has a mandate for anything, it's to get rid of Donald Trump and govern as a more normal president.

Political scientists who study mandates point out that mandate claims are routine, but only rarely meet with widespread acceptance. Rarely does the electorate send a clear "message" somehow endorsing the winning candidate's policies. Indeed, thanks to widespread political ignorance, many voters often have little idea what those policies are, and even less understanding of their likely effects.

Even if a president does have a mandate—in the sense of broad public support for his policies—it is far from clear that means implementing them would be a good thing. Thanks to ignorance, prejudice, and other types of error, majority public opinion is often badly wrong. Majority support cannot convert an unjust or ineffective policy into a good one. Right and wrong don't depend on the number of people who support it.

As a political matter, the perception that the president has a mandate makes it more likely that he will be able to implement his agenda. It might especially make it more likely that Congress will cooperate with him. But it doesn't make that agenda any more right and just.

To avoid misunderstanding, I should emphasize that there are some major aspects of Biden's proposed agenda that I really would like to see implemented—most notably his plans to liberalize immigration policy, end Trump's trade wars, and rebuild our relationships with key allies. Biden's superiority over Trump on these vital issues are the main reasons why I voted for him. But the rightness of these policies doesn't depend on whether Biden has a "mandate" for them.

When Biden—or any president—claims to have a mandate for his agenda, such assertions should be viewed with skepticism. They are often questionable on their own terms. And they don't justify supporting unjust or counterproductive policies, even if the "mandate" claim is actually true.

When Biden and other politicians propose various policies, we should evaluate them on their merits. Good ideas (or, sometimes, even those that are just less bad than the status quo) deserve support. Bad ones should be rejected. And that's true regardless of whether they are backed by a "mandate."

NEXT: My "Jurist" Article on Expanding Freedom of Choice by Empowering More People to Vote With their Feet

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  1. I look to watching the deep suffering of the American people for this mistake. Incomes will crash. Infections will soar. Social pathologies will explode. Cancel culture will reach minorities. Nations will exploit our nation, and plunder it.

    1. The economy performed almost exactly the same over Obama’s last 3 years as it did in the first 3 years of Trump.

      1. Yet all figures say otherwise. Weird.

        1. Lol, no dum dum. Literally every statistic points to the economy being exactly the same from 2014-2019 with Obama actually adding more jobs than Trump. So Trump is now the second president to never hit 3% GDP growth but the expansion was the longest in history…until Trump failed to lead during the pandemic.

          1. “until Trump failed to lead during the pandemic.”
            Indeed, covid was Trump’s opportunity to win by a landslide. It would only have taken showing compassion toward citizens and solidarity with the medical profession.

            1. Yep, think Chris Christie during Sandy.

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            2. Exactly right.

              It was a gift to his political fortunes, and he was too stupid to know it.

              He didn’t even have to do much. Just, as you say, go with the medical advice, stick to facts, and demonstrate that he was concerned about it.

              1. go with the medical advice,
                The “medical advice” changed on an almost weekly basis. The consistent theme was.. Damage all your political strengths co that the (D) can capitalize on your weaknesses in Nov. (“seal people away in their homes, destroy the economy, destroy social cohesion, and most importantly, destroy any chance you will be re-elected.”)
                stick to facts,
                The facts were even more so fluid than the “medical advice”
                and demonstrate that he was concerned about it.
                Token efforts from any politician feigning simulated empathy aside, the few times he tried, the media would not report on it as their PolSci rejects and Obama/Clinton ex-Campaign staffers lacked the photoshop/aftereffects skill to draw a fire ring, as well as devilhorns, and beads of nixonian sweat on Trump’s forehead in an mkv format video.

                1. The “medical advice” changed on an almost hourly basis.

                  FTFY

                2. Medical advice changes over time as medical doctors, health professional, and researcher learned more about the virus, its spread, and treatment options. Your statement is foolish for implying that in a situation like this advice should be static. Where there were problems they were associated with the Trump Administration message discipline failure. Failure to maintain message discipline was a long standing problem for this administration, for Covid and a number of other issues.

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            3. I’m still convinced Trump thought the pandemic would remain centered in urban areas that are Democratic. His political base would escape relatively unscathed, so he didn’t have to demand personal sacrifice from them. The people who suffered would be governed by Democrats, so their problems would be blamed on the other party. If Trump thought covid would have an uneven effect on Blue America vs Red America, that makes his strange passivity easier to understand.

              1. ” If Trump thought covid would have an uneven effect on Blue America vs Red America, that makes his strange passivity easier to understand.”

                If Trump thought. You could have stopped there.

            4. Name one medical recommendation did President Trump refused to implement?
              Dr Brix said in late January, if deaths were 200,000 the United States would have done everything perfectly. When Dr Fauci was asked while under oath, at a congressional hearing,in September, “with the aid of 20/20 hindsight, what should the United States have done differently, to reduce death? He answered, he could not think of anything.
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              2. “Name one medical recommendation did President Trump refused to implement?”

                Wearing a mask to limit the spread of the virus to other, nearby people.

        2. damikesc : Yet all figures say otherwise.

          No they don’t :

          Economic growth, Obama’s last term : 2.4%
          Economic growth, Trump’s only term : 2.5%

          For Trump, that’s before the pandemic. Add the months of Covid and Trump drops to zero.

          1. Exactly. And if you interested in economic data the one negative in 2016 was low oil prices which due to fracking caused a mini recession in Texas which did negatively impact fracking suppliers in the Rust Belt…but due to the overall strength of the American economy the unemployment rate continued to decline in 2016. So if Trump believes the unemployment rate is the most important economic number then 2016 featured a strong economy regardless of GDP growth.

            1. ” if Trump believes the unemployment rate is the most important economic number then 2016 featured a strong economy regardless of GDP growth.”

              Depends on how you determine the unemployment rate. A popular (but inaccurate) method is to track usage of state unemployment insurance benefits. It’s inaccurate, because people who use up their benefits fall of the unemployment statistics even though they are not employed.

      2. Hi, Sebastian. Welcome to Baltimore, wherever you live.

        1. Hi, DavidBehar Welcome to West Virginia, whereever you live. Trump really brought back black lung just as he promised…not! He just threw 10 billion taxpayer dollars at the coal miners and WV economy is as depressed as ever.

  2. There is no mandate, in fact the election was a disaster for the Democrats. Yes they ousted one of the most incompetent, divisive and destructive Presidents in history, but take away the 4 million vote advantage in California for Biden and the popular vote was a tie. And if the Dems cannot find a way to gain strength in Florida, Texas and North Carolina then after the re-apportionate they will be in even more serious difficulty.

    Dems will almost certainly not take back the Senate and will lose House seats, and the vote at the state legislature level was truly awful for the Dems. And the Republicans will be even more radical, more obstructive, more filled with conspiracy and hate with the elevation of extremists in Congress.

    What the Dems have is opportunity, the opportunity to convince the nation that they can govern. Republicans have a huge risk, move to the extreme right and lose the center right and become the minority party they were destined to become under Trump. The immnediate risk for the GOP, a Supreme Court ruling overturning Roe. Such a ruling would not reduce abortions but would anger the population to the extreme, particularly since it would have been done by ‘illigitimate’ Justices (the public’s position, not mine). Don’t think so, look at Poland where the reaction to a court ruling essentially outlawing abortion rights could mean the fall of their right wing totalitarian regime.

    So Dems have an opportunity, not a mandate. If the Dems can govern, can restore stability, can ease tensions, can overcome the virus and can gain the trust, then they can get a mandate.

    1. The Ds gained the WH, won the popular vote by 4 M, and gained in the Senate. Yes, they lost some House and at the state level, but it was not in any way a disaster. The election was far worse for the Rs. But 2022 looks quite bad for Ds and the Rs will maintain their radical stances and obstructionism.

      1. There is nothing radical about resisting big government Molly. There is nothing radical about putting Americans first and disputing globalism. The only thing that is radical are the far left progressives attempting to turn America into a socialist open borders country.

        Biden has no mandate. While I am sure his crony corrupt democrats will try to throw sand in the gears of the Georgia senate races, they will not be able to flip both of them.

        1. Keep whining, loser. And clinging to the delusion that authoritarian immigration practices, government micromanagement of ladyparts clinics, abusive and bigoted policing, statist womb management, massive military spending, school prayer, torture, and other pillars of the Republican platform constitute “resisting big government.”

          Libertarians find you disgusting.

          1. Tell you what. You can have your Planned Parenthood clinics if you will leave the Little Sisters of the Poor alone. The strongest “pro-choice” advocates usually are on the opposite side of the issue when it comes to leaving people alone to live their lives.

            You’re against bloated military spending and the unceasing GWOT. Stopped clock and all that.

          2. Kirkland, you’re no libertarian.
            Everything you spout is pure yellow dog Democrat. Talking about clingers, you’re it.

          3. Illegals will flood this nation again. They will suppress the salaries of workers from laborer to professional, including the lawyer. The tech billionaires will be paying less, and their profits will soar again. They own the media and the Democrat Party. They did a good job of taking down Trump in 2020. If you hate black people, vote for Biden, destroy their record setting employment, wages, make their crime victimization soar. That is the case in all Democrat jurisdictions.

            My reply? Seize their assets in civil forfeiture for the billions of crimes committed on their platforms. They committed millions of crimes themselves by inflating viewerships and ripping off advertisers. I did have an advertisement for a petition on the internet. I believe I have standing to mandamus such a civil forfeiture.

            1. Actually Trump’s border/immigration policies along with him promoting law and order appears to have resonated with a significant number of Latinos all over the country and a few African Americans. I would bet the Latinos he reached are by and large small businesses owners and the African Americans are people with a comfortable middle class lifestyle most likely former military who choose to live in the diverse Sun Belt suburbs and not urban African American neighborhoods. So AOC’s irresponsible rhetoric is very clearly political kryptonite and Democrats should run, nor walk, away from her policy positions.

              1. The bottom 5thile of wage earners got a 10% raise from Trump policies. The next 5thile got a 9% raise. They did well because the illegals were not competing with them anymore. The millions of discoruaged workers out of the labor force under Obama were forced to return, by rising wages. That is when the tech billionaires stepped in to shut down the economy through their agents, the Democrat governors. Rising wages cut into their slave labor profits.

                1. I never know if you people believe your own imbecilic bullshit. It’s hard to find official estimates of the illegal immigrant population over the past years, but you can look at yearly border apprehensions as a marker. Statistics from the U.S. Border Patrol :

                  2009 : 556,041
                  2010 : 463,382
                  2011 : 340,252
                  2012 : 364,768
                  2013 : 420,789
                  2014 : 486,651
                  2015 : 337,117
                  2016 : 415,651
                  2017 : 310,531
                  2018 : 404,142
                  2019 : 859, 501

                  https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/media-resources/stats

                  The other side of the coin is illegal removals/returns, which the DHS lists from 2018 to 1892. In Trump’s years of 2017/2018 there were 446,380 and 388,801 respectively, averaging 417,590. In the previous four years under Obama the average was 518,594.

                  Your claim there was magical reduction of illegal immigrants that resulted in a magical increase in wages is utter gibberish.

                  1. Even legal immigration has been drastrically dropped, along with illegal immigration due to the building of the border wall. That has marked increased wage pressure. That cut into tech billionaire profits. Thus their agents in the media and the Democrat Governors shut down the economy.

              2. It wasn’t African Americans who live in poor neighborhoods largely against stop and frisk, it was Democrats and libertarians.

                It still shouldn’t be allowed, but that’s always easier to say when the bars are on your gated community rather than your downstairs windows.

            2. “Illegals will flood this nation again.”

              Aren’t they going to run into that big, beautiful wall? Or are you conceding that the thing was always a boondoggle?

          4. Kirkland, how do you know? You don’t support libertarian policies, or civil liberties.

            1. I don’t need to be a pure libertarian . . . just more libertarian than the faux libertarians who operate and follow this white, male, right-wing blog.

          5. I think many people like where Democrats have placed the Democrat Parenthood Clinics.

        2. What is radical is the assault on all social programs that hurt the poor, the obsession with eliminating regulations without regard to the consequences, repeated tax cuts for the rich, and the carve out to normal laws for religious businesses. Also the support for police brutality, the support for discrimination. And isolationism is not “America’s first” it just hurts us also.

          1. Yeah, well, the threshold for what constitutes a “normal” law keeps changing. It didn’t used to include forcing a man to make a cake for two deviants who think another man’s tuchis is the right place to consummate their “love.”

            1. Literally the only people forced to make cakes are people who have offered to make cakes in exchange for money. If making cakes for people offends your religion, then perhaps operating a bakery business is a poor choice on your part.

    2. take away the 4 million vote advantage in California for Biden and the popular vote was a tie.

      Huh? Yes, if you take away an amount of votes that corresponds to the difference between the candidates, the votes is a tie. Funny how maths works…

      1. Take away another 70 million votes and Trump swept the entire election!

      2. Right. This “take away the 4 million vote advantage in California for Biden” argument is just silly. Forty million people, nearly one out of every eight Americans, live in California. Why do they not count?

        And didn’t Trump run up a lot of votes, other places, like say the South? Why not subtract those as long as we’re subtracting?

        1. You folks do not understand the point that was being made with respect to California votes. The point was that the margin of popular vote victory for Biden was contained and concentrated in one state, which while large and diverse is not necessarily representative of the nation. The argument that there is a mandate would be much stronger if the 4 million were more evenly distributed across the nation.

          Instead what we have is a severely divided nation, and the Trump margins in a majority of states, albeit ones with far less population then the largest states, was something along 60 to 40 or better for Trump. Biden needs to narrow that gap, not close it, but narrow it if he is going to claim a mandate.

          1. I just think anyone that argues a Marine in California vote should count less than a felon in Philadelphia is making a losing argument…but apparently you believe the felon’s vote should count more?!?

            1. If all the citizens who wanted to vote were allowed to do so, the Republicans would lose throughout the country. That’s why they like suppressing votes so much. If they could suppress votes in California, they’d be able to tie there, too.

        2. The point about CA is that it is no longer a two party state in any sense. Hence it automatically grants an overwhelming popular vote advantage to any Democrat with no need to campaign

          1. An stalwart, densely populated island of blue within an expansive sea of red is a fairly straight forward concept to grasp for all but the deliberately obtuse. The reality that millions of that “muh 74 million mandate” were not for Biden, but were against Trump won’t sink in until at least 2022, if not 2024..

          2. “The point about CA is that it is no longer a two party state in any sense. Hence it automatically grants an overwhelming popular vote advantage to any Democrat with no need to campaign”

            Yeah, whereas South Carolina is totally a two-party state, along with, say, Wyoming, Kansas, and Alabama.

    3. Sidney r finkel offers the glass-half-empty view.
      For glass-half-full, I’ll quote the ever-sensible Kevin Drum :

      “Are you one of those Democrats who’s disappointed because the election wasn’t a landslide? Because Republicans actually made gains in the House and might have retained control of the Senate? I have some advice for you.

      Just turn on the TV and listen to President Trump. Listen to him bellyaching about how the election was a fraud. Listen to lie after lie after lie about illegal ballots. Listen to him demanding that we stop the count in some states and keep counting in others. Listen to him do his utmost to wreck American democracy.

      And then tell yourself: No matter what happened in the other races, we might soon no longer have this piece of human excrement sullying the White House. That should perk you right up.”

      Yep. I’m perked right up……

      1. Dems (for the last four years): Russia rigged the election

        Dems (for the last four days): Elections can’t be rigged

        1. How ’bout you cite someone who said “Russia rigged the election”? No one did. There was plenty to talk about re Russia & the 2016 election. Just recently the (GOP-led) Senate Intelligence Committee released a lengthy report on just that topic. But “rigged the election”? That’s just another one of your fantasies.

          Here’s my advice, Bob : You need to see the Biden Administration as a great personal opportunity. You’re no longer shackled to a politician who lied between almost every inhale & exhale of breath. Therefore you don’t have to lie so much. This can be a liberating time for you, Bob!

          1. Sure, no one.

            “Polls conducted in early January 2017 showed that 55% of respondents believed Russia interfered in the election;[486] 51% believed Russia intervened through hacking.[487] ” wikipedia

            You know gaslighting is now Gaslito fka Sarcasto’s thing. Get another calling card.

            1. The most successful Russian disinformation campaign has been the campaign to turn Americans against fracking by spreading lies about its safety. So by Cuomo banning fracking in NY he is doing the bidding of Putin and is a Putin stooge.

            2. Russia did hack, and they did interfere. That’s not the same thing as “rigged”. If you have a problem getting this, I can point you to any number of online English dictionaries so you can study the distinction.

              So let’s sum-up : No one believed the Russians “rigged” the 2016 elections (despite what Bob says). A lot of truly desperate, dumb and/or dishonest people claim the Democrats “rigged” the 2020 election. Are you one of them. Bob? And – if so – what is your category : Dumb or Dishonest?

              1. Russia did hack, and they did interfere.

                [citations required]

                1. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla : “We found irrefutable evidence of Russian meddling,”

                  Really, Pathogen, are you purposely trying to look stupid ?!?

                  https://www.rollcall.com/2020/08/18/senate-intelligence-committee-russian-interference-2016-election-report/

                  1. An article heavy on speculation, yet light on evidence, citing the opinion of Marco Rubio, and several democrats.. Thanks..

                    1. If it makes you feel better to say something so crudely phony, Pathogen, please go right ahead. You’re probably a Trump supporter; lies are your mother’s milk. In contrast, I’ll quote from the article:

                      “The bipartisan congressional report closes the panel’s three-year probe into the Kremlin-led operation to influence and interfere in the 2016 presidential election. The fifth and final report involved interviewing 200 witnesses and examining more than 1 million documents, the committee said.

                      Previous volumes examined Russian attempts to break into U.S. election infrastructure, the Kremlin’s use of social media to divide American public opinion, the Obama administration’s failures to counter Moscow’s push, and a review of the U.S. intelligence agencies’ assessment”

                      Gee; that sounds like more than Rubio’s opinion to me…..

                    2. Show a little respect, grb. That’s a senior Trump administration political appointee — and chapter president for the Republican National Lawyers Association — you are eviscerating,

            3. Bob, goalposts are supposed to stay in one place.
              Switching from “Russia rigged the election” to “Russia interfered in the election” fooled nobody.

    4. I have a word for California voters: Americans.

      I live in Missouri, and am aware that many of my neighbors are as angry and hateful as the first poster who responded here. Don’t care. I will live on the high road. Join me or not, it’s a free country.

      1. I have a few words for them: Majority non-white, a substantial portion admitted to the U.S. against the wishes of the then-current population, and a substantial portion being the anchor baby children of illegals or illegals who got amnestied.

        Not my countrymen, and not real Americans.

        1. “Not my countrymen, and not real Americans.”

          Agreed, you’re not very American.

    5. I assume you are a Democrat (and I am not), but I think your analysis is dead on. As Arrested Development tells us, sometimes the bar for getting on the refrigerator gets lowered.

      Right now, I see a lot of (but not all) Democrats whooping it up about getting a 67 on an open-book final. OK, you passed, but you should have done a lot better.

      1. 67%

        Both sides have a similar quality degree, and intend to use it by opening up your chest for an operation.

  3. FFS! Biden ain’t president until the electoral college votes.

    Any HS student should know that.

    1. Almost, he is not president-elect until Congress accepts the EC votes. But when it is clear to everyone that the EC votes are determined based on the election results, they are president-elect for all practical reasons. Biden will have access to formal transition funds, offices, staff, and intelligence briefings.

      1. So, there are a number of election irregularities. What could happen there?

        One possible scenario is that the State Legislature of PA could fail to certify the election results, due to the irregularities and unequal treatment of ballots. This might leave neither Trump, nor Biden with a majority

        1. Pennsylvania’s Republican legislative leaders have already dismissed prospects of a “legislative rescue” for Trump.

          You are a delusional, defeated bigot.

          1. You sound scared Arty…

            1. And you sound like you’ve been visiting some RWNJ sites.

              1. So, an interesting thing happened Bernard,

                I put a fairly innocuous target (Reign of Justinian I) into two search engines (Google and DuckDuckGo). And as expected, the results were fairly similar.

                Then I put a different search into Google (Election Fraud in PA) and DuckDuckGo And the results were…very different.

                When I see a large organization trying to suppress information, that concerns me.

              2. But, here’s a story for you Bernard. The source is the Virginia Public Access Project, and it’s the type of thing that drives us nuts.

                There’s a close House race in Virginia. The GOP Candidate is minorly ahead. And then election officials “Find” a memory stick that had somehow been mislabeled as provisional ballots. And wouldn’t you know it, it has 14,616 votes on it, and a 70.7 Democrat – 27.5% GOP Breakdown. And that shifts the election in the Democrat’s favor.

                A mislabeled memory stick.

                Not a central computer database that could be checked and rechecked, with record logging. Not a nice long paper record signed and countersigned with verified handling. You know, the way security is supposed to work for important documents.

                But a little, easily misplaced, mislabeled memory stick, disconnected from any system, that could come from anywhere…or disappear just as easily.

                https://twitter.com/vpapupdates/status/1324114852189790209?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1324114852189790209%7Ctwgr%5Eshare_3&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fjustthenews.com%2Fpolitics-policy%2Felections%2Fvirginia-democrat-surges-ahead-after-thousands-overlooked-ballots-found

                1. So? What evidence is there that it was fraudulent? Sure, it was strong for Spanberger, but it came from Henrico County, which went 63-35 for Biden, so 70% for Spanberger is not wildly off the mark, especially since these were absentee votes, which tend to favor Democrats.

                  Further, there wasn’t an unusual number of votes cast in the race. There were 171,000 cast in the Presidential race, and 125,000 in the Congressional race.

                  If you want an explanation, try this.

                  So was someone careless? Yes. Was it fraud? Not very likely.

                  1. I’m originally from Henrico County. I say go with careless.

                  2. Here’s the problem Bernard….

                    There’s no records. It’s extreme carelessness, so much so, it opens itself up for fraud. It makes carelessness or fraud impossible to tell apart. You find the memory stick…or don’t. Maybe you find this one, and forget about the one in Halifax county. No one can object if you made a mistake and just didn’t find the one for Halifax county, right? These things happen. And if they find it later, well, now you know and you can add it in. And if they don’t…well, you got your guy in office.

                    1. Armchair, of course there are records. That is how the problem was discovered, VPAP noticed that the Henrico county vote totals didn’t match their reported counts of ballots received.

                    2. You’re trying to reason with a half-educated, knuckle-dragging bigot.

                      I admire the optimism but fault the allocation of time and effort.

                  3. So? What evidence is there that it was fraudulent?

                    I’m down with the idea fraud is rare, but the above statement has it backwards. Memory sticks, or trays of ballots found in a ditch, should be proven valid, not proven invalid with a presumption of validity.

            2. Scared of what?

              President-eject Trump?

              His collection of bigoted losers and superstitious dullards?

              The House minority?

              A double runoff in Georgia?

              The prospect that conservatives might someday reverse the tide of the culture war?

              Your comment doesn’t make much sense, but maybe the problem is that it is difficult for you to express yourself with better Americans’ boot on your political neck.

              1. What do you expect Biden to get done in four years aside from issuing the usual unconstitutional executive orders that our recent presidents seem to adore?

                Speaking of boots on necks, the Biden Education Department will return to guilty until proven innocent when it comes to campus sexual assaults because all victims must be believed. This is great news for black males.

                1. What do you expect Biden to get done in four years

                  At a minimum I’m quite sure he will not be Donald Trump, which is a giant net positive.

                  1. That’s not enough, we tried that after Boooooosh!.. it didn’t go well..

                2. I will have a much better idea of what is to be accomplished after Senate races in Georgia conclude.

                  Or when Susan Collins or Pat Toomey accepts a position in the Biden cabinet.

              2. Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland : Scared of what?

                Well, I’m a bit nervous about this : Trump remain presidents over seventy more days. For plus-two months the country will be ruled by a deeply-stupid amoral toddler butt-hurt because he lost an election. If he only misbehaves on a child’s level, we’ll all get off lucky.

                1. I hope so. I hope, just to stick his thumb in the eye of the liberal client groups, pardons Dylann Roof, Bowers, Timothy McVeigh, and the like.

                  There’d be NOTHING anyone could do about it.

                  1. Sure there is. Josh Blackman could defend those pardons, and NOBODY could stop him.

                  2. You forgot Edward Snowden and Chelsea Manning

          2. They’ve already called for an audit.

            You know what that means…

        2. Pennsylvainia isn’t enough anyway.

          Trump has to reverse the results in 3 states to win. Georgia is possible, Pennsylvania plausible, but then either Michigan or Wisconsin would have to be flipped too.

          There are likely to be recounts in all 4 states, but I’m am not holding my breath on anything changing substantially, just like nothing much changed after the 2016 election was recounted partially or completely in 4 states.

          1. So, it’s doesn’t have to be reversed. It simply needs to be not certified as accurate

            If there was significant fraud in an election, or violations of election law, it would call the entire vote into doubt. And in that case it would be the responsibility of the legislature to not certify the election results.

            1. Delusional, vanquished bigots are among my favorite culture war casualties.

            2. At this point, there is gonna be either an “illegitimate” Biden, or an “illegitimate” Trump, only made worse by authoritarian state legislature fuckery. Flailing away now only damages Trumps brand, and he has 70million subscribers, let the courts/recounts play out. Biden will never shake the stink if illegitimacy and corruption now. He probably won’t accomplish much more through legislature or EO than decorating the Whitehouse if Trump/Lindsey keep pushing out judges for next 70 days..

              1. There will be a legitimate Biden and a deplorable minority of disaffected Republicans mired in desolate, dying communities on the wrong side of history.

        3. “So, there are a number of election irregularities. What could happen there?”

          We’ll trace it back to Rudy’s stooge squad, and he’ll slink away as the light shines on him.

      2. I’m sure Biden would have no qualms about a counter intelligence investigation over his work with is son’s business dealings.

        1. Really? That’s the best you’ve got ?!?

        2. Since there is no scandal there he probably would.

          1. He banged his underage niece and the Chinese have the proof.

            1. And you know about it because you are Chinese?

  4. Anyone who believes that the Democrats will suddenly become the party of free trade is truly ignorant (and not rationally so).

    1. Gee, it’s almost as if Clinton didn’t sign NAFTA and Obama didn’t sign the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement. Someone here is ignorant, but I think y81 lacks the personal self-awareness to understand who.

      1. And they were leaned on heavily by the Republicans. When did it become a Republican thing to favor protectionism, such that Bernie approved grudgingly of Trump’s actions?

  5. Just wait until the lawsuits are settled. There were lots of irregularities.

    1. Republicans’ lawsuits will not be settled. They will be dismissed. With prejudice.

      And Republicans are all about prejudice.

      1. Alito seems to disagree with you.

        1. Breaking news: Republican operative supports Trump legal position.

        2. In what way has Alito said anything concerning prospects of that complaint to avoid dismissal?

          1. https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/20pdf/20-542_i3dj.pdf

            Although the Pennsylvania Supreme Court rejected Petitioner’s request for that relief, we have been informed by
            the Pennsylvania Attorney General that the Secretary of
            the Commonwealth issued guidance today directing county
            boards of elections to segregate ballots received between
            8:00 p.m. on November 3, 2020, and 5:00 p.m. on November
            6, 2020. Nothing in the Court’s order today precludes Petitioner from applying to this Court for relief if, for some reason, it is not satisfied with the Secretary’s guidance.

      2. You’re no slouch in the prejudice department, being a supporter of bigotry and racism yourself, Kirkland.

        1. Ask Prof. Volokh to ban me. For making fun of conservatives. He’s probably cranky enough today to do it.

          Again.

      3. Several have been already because they could produce no evidence of anything.

  6. With the full weight of the media, cultural instititions, corporate America, Big tech, the political establishment, and huge chunk of the global establishment, >95% negative coverage and billions upon billions of dollars. Biden had to run the ballot printer 3 days to barely edge out Trump and lose seats in Congress (although they are still running the printers overtime in Georgia to try to fix that).

    Wow MUH BLUE WAVE. what a repudiation of evil conservatives!

    This election is close enough that any one of several factors could have flipped it. If we had a traditional election or if COVID or never happened or the tech companies hadn’t engaged in an unprecendented brazen campaign for Biden Trump would have won. The Dems know this and so they will probably try to make the COVID voting changes permanent. Tech companies will double down on the banning and censoring.

    But lets listen to Somin, this was all about immigration! Trump should have thrown open the borders from day 1 and he would have had this in the bag.

    1. Biden will win by six or seven million votes. Four or five points. Seventy-five electoral votes. A majority of the states.

      Trump got kicked in the teeth. By America’s better citizens and communities..

      Bigots hardest hit.

      1. Los Angeles and San Francisco do not speak for or represent the entire US nobody how feverantly you wish they did.

        1. “Los Angeles” and “San Francisco” don’t speak at all. Neither do North and South Dakota.

          The people who live in those places speak for themselves. Lots more voices in CA than the Dakotas.

          1. Correct, thats why the larger population always has the overall advantage, which you’d always take if you knew what was good for you. But it doesn’t count for everything. There are still a few rules to ensure the interests of the wider more diverse community are protected.

            1. Keep trying to cling to political relevance in America, AmosArch. You will spend the rest of your life barely clinging to relevance — if you are lucky.

              Culture wars have consequences. Especially for conservatives in America.

              1. Looks like one consequence is no Court packing.

                  1. Until Georgia populates its Senate seats, speculation about Court enlargement seems speculative.

                    1. Better pray that Joe Manchin falls in line:

                      Manchin was the first Democrat to say he would vote for Trump’s first nominee for the Supreme Court, Neil Gorsuch. […] He was the first Democrat to announce that he would meet with Trump’s second Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh. […] Manchin was the only Democrat to vote to confirm Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court in a 50-48 count.

                      He seems to have a problematic history of reaching across the aisle.

                    2. You keep clinging to the hope that Joe Manchin saves Republicans.

                      And ignoring the prospect that a Republican senator might take the Jefforts route . . . or that a Republican might leave the Senate for an executive branch position.

                      Frightened, disaffected, desperate clingers are among my favorite culture war casualties.

                    3. a Republican might leave the Senate for an executive branch position.

                      ????

            2. So suddenly diversity is important?

              Forgetting the snark, I am happy to protect the rights of the minority. But if we have simply a conflict of interests I see no reason the interests of a minority of voters should outweigh those of a majority.

              Nor, by the way, do I agree that the Republican minority is “more diverse” than the Democratic majority. Quite the opposite, in fact.

      2. It wasn’t just us bigots that were hit hard, Pelosi got sucker punched too, Democrats wasted over 100m on unwinnable Senate races, and even if the Democrats somehow can get to a 50 vote Senate, Joe Manchin is your 50th vote. And there is a 6-3 supreme court to make sure there isn’t any extra constitutional overreach.

    2. AmosArch : This election is close enough that any one of several factors could have flipped it.

      Uh huh. I seemed to recall my side saying the very same thing in 2016 – after an election where Russian Intelligence was on the Trump campaign team & Comey did everything but carry Trump into the Oval Office in a wheelbarrow.

      Can’t remember any of that making any difference…..

      1. You can believe everything about the Russians and Cambridge Analytica all the way to the wildest theories about listening posts on Mars and it would be a grain of sand compared to the interference on behalf of Biden this election. The evidence is everywhere around you and in the open from Dorsey censoring openly on Biden’s behalf to the >95% negative coverage of Trump from the MSM. Unlike the supersecret Russian peetapes.

        1. Don’t bother. Anyone that is actually ignorant and stupid enough to be claiming “Russia!” at this point, years after all the crazy accusations have been proven false, has no ability to discuss a topic like this rationally.

          1. Toranth : “Anyone that is actually ignorant and stupid enough to be claiming “Russia!” (etc)…..

            Damn you’re ignorant and stupid, Toranth. Below is a link about the (GOP-led) Senate Intelligence Committee report on Russian interference in the 2016 election – released just this past August. Try reading it if you want to be less ignorant and stupid.

            https://www.rollcall.com/2020/08/18/senate-intelligence-committee-russian-interference-2016-election-report/

            1. Do the Volokh Conspirators ever wonder why their fans are such uninformed, disaffected dullards?

            2. First, there’s a difference between a PR campaign and active collusion.

              I also know that the IC concluded that Russia’s information campaign supported (and attacked) both candidates in 2016, but actually wanted Clinton to win because she was viewed as more predictable and less likely to react strongly to Russian provocations.

              This was confirmed by the DNI, the NSC, and the House Intelligence Committee. Brennan – the Steel dossier guy, also the guy caught spying on Congress and then lying under oath about it – is the source of the “Russia wanted Trump to win” testimony. But sure, go ahead and trust him! After all, you like his answers, even when so many of them are proven false.

              If you want to stop being ignorant, try actually reading some more. Too bad there’s no way for you to stop being stupid, though.

              1. “First, there’s a difference between a PR campaign and active collusion.”

                Swell, but the difference between the things that Trump actually did in 2016 and active collusion is that the Russians didn’t want anything to do with him and wouldn’t work with/for him.
                They successfully saddled us with him without his help.

                1. I love how you, and only you, suddenly have evidence that Trump tried to pull a Ted Kennedy and get Russian assistance in his Presidential campaign, when not even Mueller could find it.
                  I mean, obviously, a three year investigation by a hundreds of people with the resources of the Federal government is no match for internet commenter James Pollock and his fevered imagination!

                  1. “I love how you, and only you, suddenly have evidence that Trump tried to pull a Ted Kennedy and get Russian assistance in his Presidential campaign”

                    Trump said OF COURSE he would ask for help again if the opportunity presented. He seemed to think it was odd that he was even asked about it, because EVERYBODY running for office gets help from foreigners, don’t they? Odd how this televised appearance wasn’t available in your area.

                    “I mean, obviously, a three year investigation by a hundreds of people with the resources of the Federal government is no match for internet commenter James Pollock and his fevered imagination!”

                    Try again. the three-year investigation by hundreds of people with the resources of the federal government couldn’t prove that Trump colluded with the Russians, because he didn’t. Not because he didn’t want to; they documented the meetings he and his campaign staff took with the Russian agents. Mueller indicted 12 GRU agents. The only reason we know Trump was trying to buy dirt on Hillary from the Russians is because the NSA monitors international communications that end at known Russian intelligence assets, and some of those phone calls originated with the Trump campaign. (Trump still calls this Obama spying on him). But I’m the only one who knows this.

                    1. I love how you tie together completely different things.
                      Russians were indicted, therefore Trump is guilty!
                      Truly a wonderous work of logic there.

                      You take a series of unrelated facts, and tie them together with strings that only exist in your imagination as you impute motives and secret meanings to people you’ve never met and don’t know. The resulting statements you’ve produced here are so far from reality, they cannot actually be comprehended by rational folk.

                      Even the Mueller report stated that there was never any sign of Trump or his staff attempting to contact or work with the Russians. If you have evidence to contrary, take it to the Democrats, or the media. I’ll expect to see it all over the TVs soon, ok?

        2. Trump was inaugurated on 20 January 2017, and was telling grotesque lies about his “crowd size” within hours of taking the job. Barely a week has passed since without some instance of Trump wiping his fat ugly butt on the presidency and showing contempt for respect and honor other people show the highest office in the land.

          The “negative coverage” of your snowflake whining could barely keep up with the latest example of brat behavior from our presidential toddler. Immediately after the lie about crowd size he was on to his “victory in the popular vote”. We were just two weeks into his term.

          It wasn’t that long ago Trump was peddling trash that Obama had Seal Team 6 killed. If any other president acted so loathsome it would have result in weeks of headlines. With our man-child POTUS it was just Wednesday.

          Trump EARNED his coverage. If he had been a normal president – or human being – the same actions would had seen much worse.

        3. the >95% negative coverage of Trump from the MSM

          Whether that’s accurate or not – and I doubt it is – Trump certainly earned a ton of negative coverage. If objective coverage was negative, too bad for him.

          1. Bottom line, if you don’t want the media reporting on the dirty laundry you’re involved in, either don’t handle the dirty laundry, or don’t run for President. Turns out the President’s dirty dealings are news.

    3. ” If we had a traditional election or if COVID or never happened or the tech companies hadn’t engaged in an unprecendented brazen campaign for Biden Trump would have won.”

      If Trump had handled COVID properly he might have deserved to win.

  7. Define what the term “mandate” means, with objective criteria, and then look at the facts of the situation to see if those criteria are met. Question answered.

    Oh wait, it’s a Somin post.

  8. First, about half of the voters did not want Biden. For a ‘widely despised’ candidate, Trump came pretty close to winning.
    Also, what does Biden’s mandate tell us he will do? He has both declared he would and would not do most everything on the table. Was he – what’s the legal term – lying during the election to the public or was he lying to the left wing of the party? Looks a lot like the former.

    1. Trump will lose by six or seven million votes. Four or five points. Seventy-five electoral votes.

      By your standard, essentially every losing candidate is “pretty close to winning.”

      Other than that, though, great comment!

      1. So, even 45% of the voting public count for nothing. I did not vote for him either, but by discounting him and those who supported him the media and the Democrats will further alienate a large part of the nation. Did you admire the Lady Gaga get out the vote video?

      2. You have something in your mouth.

    2. Was he – what’s the legal term – lying during the election to the public or was he lying to the left wing of the party? Looks a lot like the former.

      How so?

    3. ” Trump came pretty close to winning.”

      In the sense that he got ONLY 4,000,000 fewer votes than did the other guy. He only lost to Hillary by 3,000,000 votes.

  9. Now that Trumpism has been rejected the GOP has a mandate to return to its roots of slaughtering babies in Iraq, shipping jobs to China, and turning Mexicans into Americans!! George P Bush 2024!!!

    1. Indeed. Fuck peace.

      I can only imagine Ilya’s boner about the idea of dark skinned folks being killed en masse.

      1. And the bonus is that Neal Bush is like Hunter without the crack smoking!! So when W Bush was shipping jobs to China his brother was making $2 million from a Chinese semiconductor company…and he knew nothing about semiconductors!! But old Neal knew a lot about Asian whores! 😉

  10. We need to have an American moment here and not a partisan moment. Everyone should get behind making sure every vote is counted AND all the votes that are counted were legally cast. Failure to do this means we are no longer a Republic, but have become a full blown Banana Republic.

    This is MUCH bigger than any interference could be from Russia or any other international entity. And until we know that this election is legitimate there will always be a shadow hanging over the results.

    1. Somehow I have a feeling that you’ll still be saying there’s a shadow hanging over these results in 2024.

    2. Maybe you should consider the source of your belief that this election was not legitimate.

      A pathological liar, with malignant narcissism, who is an unindicted felon and tax fraudster. An adulterer who fantasizes about incest with his own daughter, and a self-proclaimed sex offender.

      That’s the person you’ve decided is trustworthy. A “President” who is deliberately sowing doubt about the validity of our elections because he’s too much of a FUCKING NARCISSIST to accept that he can be disliked or lose an election.

      That makes you more pathetic than he is. Because he at least has a medical diagnosis which explains his behavior.

      1. If supporting the side that steals elections and defrauds America makes you that unhappy, maybe stop supporting them.

        1. Ben has the sadz whenever half-educated bigots get stomped by their betters.

          Like now.

          Maybe let it out with a good, long cry, Ben.

        2. Your words continue to mean nothing without evidence to back them up.

          Your posts do make us laugh however. An uncomfortable, we-don’t-know-if-we-should-pity-you-or-institutionalize-you laugh, but laughter nonetheless.

          I was raised to believe that the only thing you have in life that nobody else can take away from you is your integrity. I can’t imagine being you, and having to wake up everyday realizing that I don’t even have that anymore.

          1. Even you admitted there was evidence.

            The thing an honest person would do at this point is call for investigations and bi-partisan, fair, open recounts to bring transparency to the process. That’s what I call for right now, because I’m not trying to get away with stealing an election.

            1. “investigations” led by Rudy and his stooge squad?

        3. Here’s an article showing a numerical indication of vote fraud:

          https://gnews.org/534248/

          Instapundit says Facebook won’t allow this link to be posted. I make no claims about the article one way or the other. Posting it here because Facebook reportedly doesn’t want anyone to see it.

        4. “If supporting the side that steals elections and defrauds America makes you that unhappy, maybe stop supporting them.”

          I think the Republicans like having power more than having integrity.

          1. We can read your posts. You flatter yourself when you say “I think”.

            1. “We can read your posts.”

              Not well, alas. I tend to use words with more than 3 letters in them.

      2. If you think even the shadow of a rigged election is OK then you really need to rethink your support of our democracy.

        1. There is no shadow. Just the pathetic fever dreams of a bunch of our society’s deplorable losers.

          1. You saying there is no shadow over the legitimacy of this election doesn’t make it so. That is just you looking through partisan blinder and just being a jerk.

            1. My experience has been that every legitimate, credible question concerning an American election will be investigated, as should occur,

              1. They have their chance, as they should, to put up or shut up in court. Most recently, their two witnesses, under oath, could not point to actual evidence, so the case was tossed.

            2. “You saying there is no shadow over the legitimacy of this election doesn’t make it so. ”

              The fact that you imagine it so very clearly does not make it true.

      3. Its not legitimate and the proof is in the process itself. Dems continue to stand by delays, and obscuratism, and sloppy procedures. They continue to fight tooth and nail against any voter security and to loosen whatever security is there because deep down they know they benefit from fraud. Its not necessarily the strawman fraud of a guy in a ski mask dumping a bag of thousands of votes like the media ridicules but it is low level uncoordinated fraud that adds up across millions.

        They should more than anyone if they believed their wins to be 100% legitimate be insisting on the highest standards with max verification but they don’t. Connect the dots.

        1. “Its not legitimate and the proof is in the process itself. ”

          They counted the votes that weren’t for Republicans. That can’t ever be right. Votes for candidates that aren’t Republicans are illegal per se and should have been thrown out for that reason alone.

      4. If what Trump is doing is “deliberately sowing doubt about the validity of our elections because he’s too much of a FUCKING NARCISSIST to accept that he can be disliked or lose an election” then what about Al Gore, who locked down the country for 37 days with his attempt to reverse the election?
        Or Hillary Clinton, whose campaign 2016 was still filing lawsuits trying to overturn the election in five states, as late as December 12th? Loses to would-be Congressman Poliquin, whose recount for his race went on until December 14th.
        Of course, there are extreme examples like Al Franken, whose election recounts and ballot finding didn’t end until almost 6 months had passed.

        For the past several decades, anytime the election is close in any state, there will be lawsuits trying to change the result. The losing side always claims the other side is breaking the law. Perhaps you weren’t alive in 2000, and or were too young in 2018, but for people that weren’t infants, we remember.

        1. “If what Trump is doing is “deliberately sowing doubt about the validity of our elections because he’s too much of a FUCKING NARCISSIST to accept that he can be disliked or lose an election” then what about Al Gore, who locked down the country for 37 days with his attempt to reverse the election?”

          The policy that Gore objected to was deciding who won the election before all the votes were counted. This is also what Trump was advocating FOR. That’s why the results are different.

          1. Gore was trying to get some votes thrown out, and others counted. His campaign based their standard off of which would get him more votes, and were forcing different standards to be used in different counties.

            If Trump gets to the point of demanding that late ballots be counted in Gila but not Maricopa, or that signatures should match in Fulton bu not Cobb, then he’ll be doing the same thing.

            “Count all the votes!” is one of those brainless catchphrases that sounds good, until you realize that counting illegal votes is both morally wrong and disenfranchising the legal voters.

            1. Votes for the guy you don’t like don’t magically turn into illegal votes just because the guy you don’t like is winning the election.

            2. “If Trump gets to the point of demanding that late ballots be counted in Gila but not Maricopa, or that signatures should match in Fulton bu not Cobb, then he’ll be doing the same thing. ”

              One of the late night shows (I don’t remember which) set up a video montage of Trump supporters in Pennsylvania chanting “stop the vote” and Trump supporters in Arizona chanting “count the votes”.

        2. The correct answer is both sides are hopless hacks, flipping on this issue, as with many others. The problem is most people are too hopelessly partisan to acknowledge it.

  11. Why does a libertarian care if we “rebuild our relationships with key allies”?

    Its not even true, our relations with the UK, India, Israel and Arab countries are going to deteriorate.

    Puzzling that entangling alliances is a libertarian value.

    1. People with foreign friends feel bad because those foreign friends were frowning under their masks. Now that Biden is declared elected by the news media, these people are no-doubt being congratulated by those foreign friends. You like social approval, don’t you?

    2. “Why does a libertarian care if we “rebuild our relationships with key allies”?”

      Because they don’t like the spectre of fighting important battles alone. As it turned out, the US was able to defeat Imperial Japan alone, but we had help to defeat the European Axis powers. Could we have done both, alone?
      The threat of radicalized Islamic terrorists is one that requires united opposition.
      In addition, there are some non-military threats facing the US. Pandemic, in case you didn’t know about it. Climate change threatens the very existence of Florida, and most of the west coast is on fire, which is a situation Australia might sympathize with. Getting the world economy off it’s dependence on fossil fuel would be tough for us to do by ourselves, even if we all agreed that it needs to be done.

  12. Depends on who’s doing the shouting, doesn’t it?

  13. If there is one thing Trump showed is that it’s very difficult for a president to make anything more than transient changes without support from congress, and that’s the way it should be.

    After 4 years of Trump’s sanctions and US oil production Iran is much worse off than they were before Obama sent them billions.

    Biden can rejoin the Paris accords but he impose carbon taxes, stop fracking, or provide green energy subsidies without congressional approval.

    And I doubt after such a close election Biden is going to alienate big labor by shutting down the pipeline projects Trump got approved.

    Sure there are somethings he can do like reimposing CAFE standards, and other environmental standards that Trump reversed, but still that’s not going to make any fundemental changes.

    The biggest worry is that congress will get together on some big spending bills, that always seems like something congress is ready to agree about.

    1. Kazinski : If there is one thing Trump showed is that it’s very difficult for a president to make anything more than transient changes without support from congress, and that’s the way it should be

      What exactly did Trump try to “change” that wasn’t more puppet show theatrics than reality?

      Kazinski : After 4 years of Trump’s sanctions and US oil production Iran is much worse off than they were before Obama sent them billions.

      After 4 years of Trump, the Iranians are back enriching uranium to become a nuclear power – which they weren’t doing under Obama’s accord, Trump’s own White House regularly certified that. Trump on Iran was colossal bungling, that accomplished nothing except speed Iran’s development of atomic weapons.

      Also, Kazinski is suddenly worried about spending again, right on cue.

      1. “they weren’t doing under Obama’s accord,”

        Snort. No one can be this dumb.

        1. Still residing in your fact-free safe-space, eh Bob? The Trump administration certified Iran was in full complacence with Obama’s pact both in April and July 2017. Right before Trump sabotaged the deal, he notified Congress it was working & Iran’s nuclear program was shut down.

          Since you’re frequently hard of hearing, Bob, I’ll repeat : Trump was required to report whether Iran was obeying the deal, and he officially said they were. Now why don’t you stop snorting, stop being so damn ill-informed & ignorant, and try doing a little research on the topic?

          1. “he officially said they were”

            Oh “officially”. Do you think he went over to Iran and nosed around?

            No, he relied on our witless intelligence agencies. Israel with a functioning spy agency says otherwise.

            1. Israel may not be entirely neutral on the question of Iranian-American relations (or lack thereof).

        2. “Snort. No one can be this dumb.”

          counterpoint: You do indeed seem to be as dumb as you are.

      2. “What exactly did Trump try to “change” that wasn’t more puppet show theatrics than reality?”

        The big thing of course was the tax bill, changing the corporate tax rate from 35 to 25, and ending bloated mortgage and property tax deductions were substantial changes. That is permanent, and it’s very unlikely congress will roll it back.

        I’m not sure why it’s on Democrats list to roll back the cap on deductions anyway, I thought there platform was taxing those who make over 400,000. That’s who those outsized deductions were benefitting.

        1. Kazinski : The big thing of course was the tax bill

          I willingly concede that point as the exception that proves the rule. Because there’s nothing so typical as a new Republican president promising multi-trillion dollar tax cuts without any offsetting spending cuts and/or tax hikes. They always promise the tax cuts will unleash unheard-of economic growth & pay for themselves with rainbow-unicorn magic fairy dust. They use the budgeting provisions that are exempt from Senate super-majority restrictions and/or get a few Democratic votes from Senators eager to vote for another multi-trillion dollar freebie. Massive budget deficits always result, as the fairy dust promises prove to be the same empty lie as always.

          There. I just described to you : Reagan, George W. Bush, and Trump. I described the next Republican president as well. Everybody loves cost-free shit. That shtick never gets old…..

          1. “there’s nothing so typical as a new Republican president promising multi-trillion dollar tax cuts without any offsetting spending cuts and/or tax hikes.”

            The spending cuts are intended, they just aren’t disclosed. The theory is that if you cut off the revenue, then ending, say, Medicare becomes possible whereas if you start off by saying you intend to kill Medicare, you can’t get elected. Towards the end of the election, Trump started campaigning against the Trump Administration, claiming to support parts of the ACA that his team was actively trying to destroy.
            Politicians love to campaign on tax cuts and spending that benefits constituents, and Republicans do, too, because it works… people ARE dumb enough to vote for someone simultaneously promising to cut taxes and increase spending. More honest Republicans at least tone that down to promising to cut taxes and keep current spending in place.

        2. Kazinski, you are clueless about the mortgage and property tax deductions. In the vicinity of prosperous cities houses are expensive. That is because those cities attract well-educated, productive people, who bid the prices up.

          Paradoxically, that doesn’t mean the folks who buy those houses are necessarily rich. A modest house bought by a two-earner family (teacher/nurse, for instance, who probably get paid total, $90,000 – $160,00, nowhere near $400,000) runs them about $340,000 – $425,000. That maybe gets them a 1,200 sq. foot ranch, in an okay neighborhood—nothing special, mind you, the public schools you get in that price range will be safe, but not the best. For better public schools, add at least 50% to those real estate prices.

          In the ordinary neighborhoods, the real estate taxes will add about $4,000 – $5,000 a year to the mortgage payments. In better neighborhoods, the real estate taxes start at nearly twice that.

          So these aren’t rich people. They are financially stressed people—typically with college and graduate educations, who earn accordingly—but who pay right to the limit of their ability to maintain a minimally decent lifestyle, give their kids typical public educations, and lately, can barely save at all. Many of them never take vacations, because they can’t afford to. They are some of the hardest working folks in the nation.

          Guess what Trump’s tax cuts did to those folks (of whom there are millions). The cuts came disguised by a revised, reduced withholding table. In their paychecks, it looked like a tax cut. Then when tax day came around, they discovered they owed back every penny that had been subtracted from their withholding. On top of that, they got hit by a multi-thousand dollar tax increase, owed immediately, because of Trump’s so-called, “bloated mortgage,” deduction roll backs. Which, as you helpfully pointed out, is probably permanent.

          You know how Trump got clobbered by suburban voters in PA? That’s one of the explanations.

          The folks targeted by Trump in the blue states read advocacy like yours, and they know it means you think they are stupid not to move to a red state and get a better deal. But they are horrified that if they did that, their kids would grow up thinking like you do.

  14. Indeed, thanks to widespread political ignorance, many voters often have little idea what those policies are, and even less understanding of their likely effects.

    I wish people would stop spouting this nonsense about politically ignorant voters. Whether they are or not does not matter. The simple truth is that no matter how well-informed voters are, people do not vote for policies or agendas or laws or ANYTHING except the candidates themselves. No candidate ever has exactly matched any voter’s preferences, and even if they do at the point in time when the voter votes, they probably didn’t yesterday and probably won’t tomorrow.

    Voters are entirely rational about this and vote for candidates, hoping that what they have seen of the candidate so far will somehow carry over into their political life in some respect.

    The only ignorant irrationality going on here is pundits who pundit about ignorant irrational voters.

    Speaking of which …

    Exit polls indicate that some 30% of those who voted for Biden say they did so primarily to oppose Trump (I was one such lukewarm Biden voter myself).

    I remember it well, the claim that Trump’s spending was more dangerous than Biden’s spending, as pathetic rationalization as there is. So much for rational voting.

    1. “I remember it well, the claim that Trump’s spending was more dangerous than Biden’s spending”

      That might depend on revenue policies and practices.

    2. “I wish people would stop spouting this nonsense about politically ignorant voters.”

      Lots of people hate it when people annoy them by pointing out things which are true. Here’s a couple more: Donald Trump is not good at being President, and Mitch McConnell is not good at achieving Republican long-term goals. Yet people voted for both of them, enough to win in Mitch’s case.

      Here in North Carolina, a lot of people tut-tutted about Senate candidate Cal Cunningham’s extra-marital affair, and then went ahead and voted for saintly, strictly-monogamous Donald Trump.

  15. I realize this is a radical suggestion, but since the original post was about the question of whether or not Biden has a mandate, would it not be appropriate to discuss that instead of the mindless blather that most of these posts are writing. Just saying . . . .

    1. Buzzwords like “mandate” mean more-or-less nothing. Why would you expect the discussion about them to be more meaningful?

      1. If Democrats send two Georgians to the Senate, quibbling about the definition of “mandate” will be the least of the clingers’ woes.

        1. Tell that to Joe Manchin.

          1. Too busy working on getting Collins or Toomey into the Biden administration.

            Keep flailing, you bigoted loser.

  16. Kind of thinking Jill should have some say in this whole mandate thing…

  17. “A slight majority is not a mandate for great changes.” Clinton and Obama adhered to this principle, as will Biden. GWB and Trump did not.

    1. BTW. . .

      Trump was the third straight Republican President who was born into wealth and never had to work a day in his life.

      Biden will be the fifth straight Democratic President who grew up in modest (if not desperate) circumstances.

      1. That’s why the Bush family gave George P Bush a plum job in the Navy Reserve and orchestrated a deployment to Afghanistan for a few months. So George P Bush clearly didn’t want to put in the work to become a partner at a law firm and his real estate ventures funded by Bush loyalists were transparently phony. So apparently the Bush family believes him spending 8 months in Afghanistan gives him something to hang his hat on…of course the Biden family believed the same thing with Beau.

        1. Until you’ve lost a child you should never say something like that.

          1. You clearly lack reading comprehension skills. I’m a Biden supporter. Why do you think after Beau died that Joe got Hunter in the Navy?? Clearly Joe wanted Hunter to have a shot at carrying on the Biden political legacy and serving in the military looks very good to voters. I think it’s a positive development that the elite now believe it is important for their family members to serve in the military…but 100 out of 100 lawyers would love their powerful parents to demand they give up making partner for a plum Navy Reserve job whereas JAG is probably more grunt work than what an intelligence officer (who for all intents and purposes is more powerful than the DefSec) actually does.

    2. What?
      Were you not around for the administrations you named?
      Clinton’s massive budget rework was a HUGE deal at the time.
      Obama’s first year in office resulted in the PPACA, a massive rework of 15% of the nation’s GDP. Hardly avoiding “great changes”.

      On the other hand, Bush started his term with 9/11. That set off the past 20 years of ‘national security’ used by ALL Presidents. “Great changes”, certainly, but ones which had nothing to do with mandates or policies
      Trump hasn’t made “great changes”. If you think he did, please list them. Unless, maybe, you are referring to the historic brokering of peace deals in the Middle East?

      1. The APA was a Republican plan. Obama proposed a Republican plan. His signature achievement, which he expended a lot of political capital for, while the county was recovering from the worst economic crisis since the 1930s.

        Bush allowed 9/11 to happen. But Democrats did not allow themselves to say that. John Kerry did not allow himself to say that. Obama did not allow himself to say that. Though, after Bush took his eye off the ball to stupidly invade Iraq to prove his manhood, Obama actually tried to get bin Laden and being a competent adult actually did get him.

        1. Bush didn’t allow September 11, that was an IC failure; and Obama didn’t get bin Laden, that was the military. Bush’ response was alright post-attack, Obama’s trying to take credit for something he merely approved was pathetic. If you want to make ignorant claims, try them without the in-group and partisan biases.

          1. “Bush didn’t allow September 11, that was an IC failure”

            Who was boss of the IC at the time? Hint: W

            “Obama’s trying to take credit for something he merely approved was pathetic”

            If you think that was pathetic, I have two words for you, “Mission Accomplished”. The whole “flightsuit W” photo op was pathetic.

            1. Bill Clinton bragged about not escalating the violence by killing Osama bin Laden in the 1990s. He felt that risking civilian deaths was too much.
              He proudly made these statements in a television interview on September 10th, 2001.

              Bush was President in 2001, yes. If you think that merely sitting the in the White House means that everything that happens in the world is caused by that person, you are crazy. You’re also going to have a hell of a time during the next 4 years, as starting 2021 every act of violence, every natural disaster, even every plane crash is suddenly going to be the fault of the Harris/Biden administration.

              As for “Mission Accomplished” – again, step away from the memes and face reality. The Abraham Lincoln had been given a SEAD mission during the invasion, and completed it. The ship was being transferred back to San Diego and as part of their ‘celebration’, President Bush visited. The banner was by the ship, for the ships crew – not by Bush or his staff.
              As for the flightsuit, it certainly was stagecraft – the entire flight was – but it was also legit because he was a former aviator and had just flown in in a crew position. Like Eisenhower, who sometimes wore his uniform as President, for public appearances.

              Finally, Obama deserves the credit for not listening to the naysayers in his administration that wanted to NOT kill bin Laden – like Clinton or Biden. That’s a statement from one Barack Obama, by the way. However, the program that found bin Laden was started in 2001, ran for 7 years under Bush, then continued (with downsizing) for 2 more years under Obama.

              1. ” If you think that merely sitting the in the White House means that everything that happens in the world is caused by that person, you are crazy.”

                The buck stops where?

                ” You’re also going to have a hell of a time during the next 4 years, as starting 2021 every act of violence, every natural disaster, even every plane crash is suddenly going to be the fault of the Harris/Biden administration.”

                That sounds like a “them” problem. Can you explain the logic you seem to imagine that makes it a “me” problem?

                “As for the flightsuit, it certainly was stagecraft – the entire flight was – but it was also legit because he was a former aviator and had just flown in in a crew position. ”

                He had to order the ship out of position so that he could make the flight, so yeah, 100% staged, 0% “legit”.

                Your vision seems to be clouded with partisanship.

              2. “Bill Clinton bragged about not escalating the violence by killing Osama bin Laden in the 1990s. He felt that risking civilian deaths was too much.”

                He TRIED getting bin Laden in the 1990’s. Republicans at the time accused him of trying to distract us from the critical national security issue of whether or not one of the interns was letting him play “hide the salami” while he was supposed to be being faithful to noted saint of conservative ethics, Hillary.

                1. Haha! No. No, he didn’t try. In addition to the testimony of the military and CIA folks that were denied permission to kill bin laden, there’s also the direct and public recording of the interview. You can find it yourself on ABC News.

                  I nearly got him. And I could have killed him, but I would have had to destroy a little town called Kandahar in Afghanistan and kill 300 innocent women and children, and then I would have been no better than him.
                  And so I didn’t do it.

                  Clinton was worried about ‘escalating’ and so refused to risk civilian causalities. He is on film saying it.

                  1. If a politician says something, it absolutely has to be true! Politicians never lie, do they. Clinton was acquitted on a charge of perjury. He launched a couple of waves of cruise missiles trying to get bin Laden, but it turned out he wasn’t where they thought he was. Republicans at the time kept talking about “wag the dog” because the only reason to try to kill a known terrorist is to take pressure off your domestic problems.

                    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Infinite_Reach

                    1. So you don’t like what Clinton said, so now you’re claiming he’s lying about it – even though other people have said the same thing and provide more details, too.

                      Plus your ‘counterexample’ is an ineffective attack on an al-Qaeda training camp where bin Laden wasn’t living and a “terrorist chemical weapons factory” that wasn’t one and didn’t have any ties to al-Qaeda.

                      Got it.

                    2. “Got it.”

                      What you got is a badly-twisted view of reality.

                      You got it, all right.

        2. No, the PPACA was not a Republican plan. This piece of idiocy shows up constantly, thanks to the Vox-level “explainers” and the ignorant that believe them.
          I’m assuming you meant the PPACA, because the Administrative Procedures Act was not mentioned, plus it was passed under Truman in 1946.

          First, the Heritage Foundation did NOT publish a ‘prototype’ of the ACA. They published a book of many different experts presenting possible ways to reform healthcare, and one of them proposed a individual mandate. Stuart Butler felt that forcing people to participate would expand risk pools sufficiently to drive down long term funding risk of care. In the same book, there were others that explicitly rejected Butler’s ideas, and argued against the mandate.
          Second, the Heritage book – or Butler’s 1980s speech where he first introduced his idea – explicitly rejected the idea of government managing plan content.

          Using subsidized risk pools allows high-risk individuals to be subsidized by taxpayers in general. An alternative strategy – mandating insurance coverage without regard to risk – is attractive to some analysts, but it has the defect of pushing up rates for all insured individuals. Thus the cost of protecting the high-risk group is shouldered equally by all insured families. This is far more regressive than using the general tax code to cover these individuals.

          .
          Third, no Romney did not create it. Romney actually vetoed the “Romneycare” plan, but was overridden by the Democrats in the legislature.
          Finally, you call it his “signature achievement” that he “expended a lot of political capital for”… but that goes directly against your first claim that he didn’t make any “great changes”.

          1. “Finally, you call it his “signature achievement” that he “expended a lot of political capital for”… but that goes directly against your first claim that he didn’t make any “great changes”.”

            This can be reconciled by the fact that the ACA didn’t change as much as the whiners complained of. Had the D’s gone straight to single-payer instead of trying to maintain a capitalistic marketplace in place, that would have been a “great change”. Telling the private companies “you can compete in the market or not as you choose to do so, but if you want in your product(s) have to meet these standards […]” is a small change.

          2. “No, the PPACA was not a Republican plan.”

            No, but it was intentionally kludged to include features designed to attract Republicans to support it. Such as propping up private, for-profit insurance companies instead of cutting the entire market up by offering a public option. But no, the R’s didn’t want a plan that had features in it designed to appeal to them, so the next time the D’s have control of enough of the federal government, you’re going to see a single-payer solution and a lot of insurance companies crying in the corner.

            1. Republicans were not involved in the drafting of the ACA. At all. Not even once. It was never intended to get Republican votes.

              There were specific pieces tossed in there to buy the votes of some Democrats (like the infamous Cornhusker Kickback) and the independent Lieberman’s refusal to accept the public option.

              But it wasn’t the Republicans that put any of that into the bill.

              1. “Republicans were not involved in the drafting of the ACA. At all. Not even once.”

                True. Which is why nobody is claiming they did. But… ” It was never intended to get Republican votes.” is just flat out wrong. They were hopeful of gaining bipartisan support, so they adjusted the law they were writing to make it more acceptable to Republicans.

                You could have seen it in the electioneering of recent months, as a bunch of Republicans (notably including President Trump) tried to take credit for preserving the parts of the ACA that are popular with Republican voters.

                1. Please, provide some evidence that the Democrats wrote any part of the law to appeal to Republicans. I’d really like to know which sections they were.

                  You previously claimed that the lack of the public-option was to appeal to Republicans, when in fact it was to appeal to Lieberman. Can you provide a new claim, maybe one that is true this time?

                  1. Telling you things that are true is a waste of time, because they don’t fit your distorted view of reality.

                    1. You’ve never been able to provide evidence of any of your claims, so I didn’t actually expect you to start now.

                      I’m glad to see that you have lived up to my – quite real – expectations one more time.

  18. Question 1. Who won the election?

    Question 2. See Question 1.

    1. “Question 1. Who won the election?”

      The American people. Unequivocally.

  19. “It is now clear that Joe Biden will be the next president of the United States, despite some last-ditch denialism by Donald Trump.”

    As opposed to Al Gore’s last ditch denialism?

    1. It was Bush who went crying to the federal court.

      I don’t think Trump is capable of the maturity that Gore displayed in his speech of December 13, 2001.

  20. Biden is also substantially more popular than the widely despised Trump has ever been.
    President Trump’s approval numbers are better than Obama’s
    I get the author of the post, is all wound up attempting to use emotions to shore up his illogical rant. But lying from the start disqualifies him as someone who’s opinion matters.

    1. Citation needed.

    2. President Trump’s approval numbers are better than Obama’s

      Cite, please.

      1. Cite, please?

        Jesus revealed it, Donald Trump tweeted it, QAnon explained it, and Josh Blackman will defend it.

        Anything else you need to know?

      2. Pick your poll.
        According to one, Trump had 52% the week before the election, compared to Obama’s 50%.
        According to a different poll, Trump had 46% compared to Obama’s 48%.

        Either way, they are roughly equal (plus or minus 3-5%). Claiming “better” or “worse” is false here.

        1. “Pick your poll.”

          The one we just started on Nov. 3 should do nicely. “guy who is not Donald Trump” beat out “guy who is Donald Trump” by around 4,000,000 votes or so.

          1. There wasn’t any poll like that, so I don’t know what you are talking about.

            Americans older than pre-school know there 51 Presidential elections on November 3rd, though.

            1. “There wasn’t any poll like that”

              How the fuck did you miss the election?

              1. Hey, it’s a guy that doesn’t know the difference between an approval poll and an election, plus cannot read enough to see where I mentioned all 51 presidential elections.

                1. Hey, it’s a guy who said we didn’t do any polling to determine Trump’s popularity, and now wants to retcon his answer to say he said there were 51 of them.

                  1. If you’re defending the claim that Trump is more popular than Obama, you first have to overcome the fact that Obama WON two popular elections, and Trump hasn’t even won one.

                    1. Are you just trying to embarrass yourself with these posts?

                      There are polls that have Trump with a higher approval than Obama had at the same time. This is a fact. As I explicitly said in my first post here, the numbers are within the margin of error, so that trying to say that one has a higher approval than the other is not possible.

                      If you were able to read and understand, the English language, you would not then proceed to say that I was claiming Trump was more popular unless you were lying. The fact that did you did so indicates that you are either utterly incompetent, or utterly dishonest.
                      Or both – there’s no evidence ruling out both.

    3. “President Trump’s approval numbers are better than Obama’s”

      Among rightwing wingnuts, sure. But for everyone else… Obama could have won re-election had he not been precluding from serving a third term. Donnie the T has had his stooges trying to help him rig this election for a couple of years and they still couldn’t pull it off.
      Hint: Donnie has never won the popular vote in a Presidential election, losing to both Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden. This is not the sign of a popular presidency.

  21. Slate seems to think so:

    “Even Without the Senate, Biden Can Get an Awful Lot Done”

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/11/biden-executive-power-senate

  22. Biden has a clear mandate, and that mandate is to not be Donald Trump. I think he can do it.

    1. This is one I’ll agree with. Even Republican voters don’t seem to actually *like* Trump, even if they prefer the policies his Administration ends up pushing.

      1. “. Even Republican voters don’t seem to actually *like* Trump”

        Except that the ones who DO like him, like him very much. Such a shame the ones capable of running the country aren’t personally loyal to him, and the ones that are personally loyal are blatant incompetents.

  23. Biden has no mandate. If duly elected and sworn in, he’ll be forced to resign by Democrat (due to senility) and replaced by Harris within the next two years.

    1. No, not “within”’two years”. Need to wait till at least Jan 21, 2023 so Harris can run for re-election twice.

    2. “Biden has no mandate. If duly elected and sworn in, he’ll be forced to resign by Democrat (due to senility) and replaced by Harris within the next two years.”

      This seems to be a popular canard. It has the advantage of not being readily refuted by documentary evidence (such as a Hawaiian birth certificate) but it has the disadvantage of sounding decidedly paranoid.

  24. What do you think the odds are that now Covid gets “cancelled” in about two months? “Oh look at that…it just went away…funny how that happened…”

    1. Sure, sure. The coronavirus will just go away by itself once the weather starts to get colder. We’ve turned the corner.

      1. Someone needs to tell Mr. Trump that every four times he claimed we turned the corner he was saying we were back where we started.

  25. I am so tired of this. Has even one state issued certified vote totals? Have ANY of the swing states finished counting yet? Are the overseas military votes counted yet? Have all of the legal challenges and recounts been completed?

    Biden hasn’t won yet. Yes, he probably will win, but his margin in the states that might carry him over the finish line was tiny last I looked. PA, 30k. WI, 20K. NV, 28K. Trump is ahead by 80K votes in NC, and they refuse to call it for him?

    Calling him the winner is premature. Talk of a mandate is insane.

    1. “Calling him the winner is premature.”

      Nah, it’s over, and your boy is toast.

  26. What happened in this election was two different mandates, one for Trump, and one for Biden. That is counter-intuitive, but maybe not surprising, given the imposing level of polarization. Trump got ~ 11% more votes than he got in 2016, which is huge. The mandate to continue Trumpism was unmistakable. But the mandate to get rid of Trump was even bigger—historically bigger, actually.

    What confuses any post-election reckoning is that Trump’s huge constituency (huge, but minority!) were unified pro-Republican partisans (whatever pro-Republican even means in the age of Trumpism), and that gave Trump’s turnout mandate-sized coat-tails down-ballot. But the Democrats were, typically, fractious. On the mandate to get rid of Trump, the Democrats delivered mightily, and their coat-tails ended there.

    That’s the way it is with Post-Clinton, identity-politics Democrats. Even within their own party, they can’t agree on what a mandate would look like, so they don’t get one.

    Biden may have the political skills to change that. His enduring career—not to mention his success with his long-march trek to the White House—suggest that even his partisans may find him easy to underestimate.

    But political skills aren’t all Biden needs. To organize the Democrats sufficiently to get them mandates, Biden will have to prove more politically imaginative than he has heretofore shown himself to be. Success at that would give him one of the great presidencies, if he could do it. But it’s a tall order for a 78-year-old, habitual conventional thinker.

    More likely, a real Democratic Party mandate will await 2024, and an entirely different kind of politics. Look for a very young, presently unrecognized and unsuspected presidential candidate—one with charisma enough to shoulder Harris aside to get the nomination. If that doesn’t happen, Harris will probably be the candidate, and some Republican will probably win.

    Folks who think this has been a landmark election will probably have to rethink that after 2024. This one has been notably consequential, because Trump is gone. The next one promises change on a much broader front.

    1. I think what really happened, (Assuming for the moment what happened wasn’t just massive fraud.) is that the Democrats, with the help of an all-in media, managed to convince a lot of marginal voters that Trump was cosmically horrible… without convincing them that the Democrats were actually desirable.

      Biden’s victory over Trump, assuming it does pan out after all the votes are counted, and legal challenges done, was dependent on people who wanted Trump gone, and nothing more. Apparently there were a lot of ballots cast with Biden checked for President, and offices down the ticket either left unchecked, or actually cast for Republicans. It’s the only way to explain gaining in the House and losing in the White house, assuming an honest count. We apparently had a number of states where Republicans generally did very well, except at the very top of the ticket. Which is not a usual thing to see.

      If you don’t assume an honest count, it looks like Trump winning with decent coattails, but failing to overcome fraud that was specifically aimed his way, not generally against Republicans.

      1. ” the Democrats, with the help of an all-in media, managed to convince a lot of marginal voters that Trump was cosmically horrible… without convincing them that the Democrats were actually desirable.”

        What really happened is that Donald Trump convinced a lot of people that he has no aptitude for the job of President, via the simple method of demonstrating this fact. Trump was hoping to be elected to the monarchy, but we don’t have one. His skills are better utilized as an unemployed circus clown, so a return to private life for him is a net win.

    2. “That’s the way it is with Post-Clinton, identity-politics Democrats. Even within their own party, they can’t agree on what a mandate would look like, so they don’t get one. ”

      It’s like herding cats. Cats are tidy creatures, so once they’ve buried the memory of Trump in the litter, they’ll look around, and not have any thing to do.

      1. That’s depressingly funny, Pollock.

        1. Intelligent people have no use for partisanship. It’s a crutch for lazy thinkers.

  27. Joe Biden does not have anything even close to a mandate. In reality roughly 30% of eligible voters voted for Biden. There is a significant number within the 30% of eligible voters that only voted for him because the hated Trump. This does not constitute a mandate.

    Back in the Soviet Cold War times the USA scoffed at the Soviet Media as being the propaganda arm of the Kremlin. We presented ourselves as an example of the world of having a free and unbiased press.

    During this election we have see sycophantic and biased corporate media that is acting as the propaganda arm of the Democrat party. The corporate media stopped reporting negative stories once it became apparent that Biden was the presumptive nominee.

    The corporate media has been providing protection and filtering negative stories while either attacking opposing candidates or blacking out other candidates by refusing to cover or even acknowledge their existence as candidates.

    I fully understand the dislike for Trump and I am no fan and have refused to vote for him either election. I however am deeply troubled by these events and the actions of the corporate media.

    Biden may have won the Presidency, but the corporate media has lost all credibility and have lost their soul. Their actions probably should be considered campaign contributions considering the disgrace of how the corporate media has conducted themselves.

    I understand that Trump has called the corporate media “Fake News”, but the truth is term “Fake News” was an attempt by the corporate media to discredit alternative news sources (this includes Reason). Trump took the corporate media’s slander of alternative news sources and threw it back in their faces.

    I may not agree with Trump much, but he actually got this correct. The corporate media is largely biased spin and often devoid of actual truth. In other words our corporate media is no better than the old Soviet press that we denigrated.

    Going forward, I expect a lot from alternative news sources such as Reason. Reluctant Biden supporters like the author need to hold Biden’s feet to the fire.

    There is plenty in both Joe Biden’s and Kamala Harris’s past to be alarmed about. I expect Reason to come up with creative methods to do this. Basically to perform the function the media traditionally held of keeping tyrants at bay, as it is very apparent the sycophantic corporate media will not.

    1. “There is a significant number within the 30% of eligible voters that only voted for him because the hated Trump. This does not constitute a mandate.”

      Whereas Trump only got in by virtue of not being named Hillary, Biden got in by not being Trump, and before that Obama got elected on a platform of not being GW Bush. Americans don’t really vote FOR people anymore, they vote AGAINST the other guy.

      I think Biden has a mandate to run the government like a grown-up, which is what he was going to do anyway. Blissfully, in 3 months we can all go back to not giving a damn what Donald Trump thinks about anything, and that’s a 100% improvement before Biden actually does anything.

      1. Don’t know if I’d call it a mandate, Biden was elected specifically to act as an grown up. I expect he will govern as a middle of the road pol and I think the hard progressives will be disappointed.

        To echo UDG’s point, the real loser in this election is the American People, vis-a-vis the corruption of journalism. Used to be, journalists (as opposed to opinion writers) hewed tightly to the concept of reporting only verifiable facts. They would as example eschew saying “global warming is increasing wildfire danger” in lieu of “The IPCC says…” Lately it’s been quite common for journalists to use language along the lines of, “President Trump said without evidence…” even though a full discussion of the issue would entail providing context to the claim and whether there was in fact any evidence. Don’t know how many times I heard “Trump supports white supremacy because in response to Charlottesville he said there were good people on both sides” while leaving out the part of his statement where he explicitly disavowed white supremacists.

        Way too many journalists are now comfortable injecting their personal view. It’s easy to justify that they were “forced into it” by Trump’s behavior but the resulting loss of confidence in their profession is detrimental long term. Whether the toothpaste will be put back into the tube remains to be seen.

        1. “To echo UDG’s point, the real loser in this election is the American People, vis-a-vis the corruption of journalism.”

          this is simple-minded analysis. Taking exception to the fact that reporters of facts are not constrained to one’s partisan preferences is both lazy and stupid.

          1. My complaint was about journalists inserting opinion into what are ostensibly news stories, this is not a left/right issue and nowhere did I suggest otherwise. You may have assumed (incorrectly) that I’m a Trump supporter based on the examples, but that’s on you.

            Feel free to address my point. Or you can just accuse me of being stupid and lazy, whatever floats your boat.

            1. “Feel free to address my point.”

              Ok, it’s still a pretty simple-minded analysis. Compaining that reporters don’t share your pre-conceived notions of what is or isn’t true accomplishes little to nothing, and whining about being called on it is similarly pointless.

              If you don’t like being called stupid and lazy, don’t be stupid and lazy.

              1. They are not “my” pre-conceived notions, they are what used to be universal journalistic standards. I will leave you to your name calling, since that seems to be what qualifies as argument in your world.

                Cheers.

  28. I think Biden real mandate is to try to bring Americans together. Many groups set aside their preferences to support him. We should give him that chance. This is a decent man, who will treat people fairly and who cares about this country. I think this will be a greater legacy than any new big program.

    1. ” This is a decent man, who will treat people fairly and who cares about this country.”

      I am glad weed has been legalized but never forget that even legalized products can be abused .

      1. Meth still isn’t legal, and you should give it up.

    2. “I think Biden real mandate is to try to bring Americans together.”

      He can try, but nobody should expect much success in this effort. Mediation only works for people who want to meet in the middle, and the partisans have no such desire. Obama learned this lesson the hard way.

      1. I think that after the last four years there are many, not all, who will be willing to come together. I am not interested in accommodating those who advocate violence or racism, but I think this group is small. For those worried about their jobs, their health care, their families we can build bridges.

        1. Obama started his administration trying to heal divisions. How well did that go?

  29. “rebuild our relationships with key allies”

    I’m always fascinated by libertarian hot takes on foreign policy. Which “key allies” does Ilya think we need to “rebuild our relationships”* with? Who does he think isn’t returning our phone calls?

    *This means, of course, throwing American tax dollars at them hand over fist.

    1. Who are key allies are depends on what goal we are trying to achieve.

      the goal of preventing Iran and Syria from exporting terrorists requires different allies from preventing North Korea from developing missile technology capable of reaching mainland US targets and building favorable import and export deals requires a different set of diplomatic skills.

      Trump’s “skill” at foreign-policy deal-making meant we had to send US taxpayer dollars to American soybean farmers to make up for the fact that he pushed China into deciding not to buy from our farmers any more. But hey, it was worth it to get China out of our supply chain for new iphones.

    2. Rebuilding relationships is about a lot more than just money. That said we should not be afraid to spent money when necessary. Trump may have approached foreign policy like a miser, but that does not mean it is effective. The question is not what you spend but did you get value for that money. Nothing suggest Trump got anything for money he did or did not spend.

  30. Biden : Not my President

    1. America: Who cares about ejhickey?

      (Especially educated, reasoning, accomplished, modern, decent America*.)

      * offer not available in Oklahoma, Mississippi, West Virginia, Wyoming, Alabama, South Carolina, Idaho, South Dakota, North Dakota, Indiana, Utah, or Florida panhandle

    2. “ejhickey
      November.8.2020 at 11:54 am

      Biden : Not my President”

      Tell somebody who cares.

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