Election Week

November 7, 2020

It’s been a wild and tiresome week in the United States. As of right now, on Saturday, there still is no official winner to the presidential election. We could hear an update this weekend, or not.

This week I was unable to focus very hard on anything else. How can I be productive when the balance of our country is in limbo? Sure, it’s just one election but it seems so much bigger than anything in our lifetimes and the moment is weighing heavily.

Sadly, this was not the repudiation and pushback of the Trumpian ways that some, including yours truly, had hoped for. By most accounts, Biden is expected to win big in the electoral college. Perhaps by winning 300 electoral votes. That’s big in terms of a traditional presidential election. But there are still over 69 million people in this country that lived through the past four years of this mess, and still said “yes, more of that please.” I have trouble wrapping my head around that.

Yesterday I was walking around our neighborhood trying to stay calm and I tried to tune in to a conservative media radio show. I wanted to hear the perspective and get a balance of opinions on what was going on. It was shocking. The host was livid, talking about votes that are being manufactured out of thin air to steal the presidency away. I lasted about a minute before I had to switch it off. I understand these shows are entertainment-based and they need to cater to their audience for ratings and continued relevance. But this is a dangerous precedent. Votes are not being manufactured. They are being counted. There is no evidence of any widespread fraud. There is no conspiracy here. This is a system, however broken and biased as it is, that’s working.

I’m not sure where this country goes from here. I’m still optimistic that good people will prevail and that we’re going to be able to come together again despite our differences. I still have hope.

Some Election Week Quick Hits

A few other observations and notes from this week:

  • John King from CNN is a national treasure. He's been so calm, clear, and informative this week. This election has been incredibly complicated and he walks through it with ease. Bravo.
  • Polling: Is polling dead? For the past two presidential elections (2016, and now in 2020) the mainstream polling efforts have been completely wrong. I know these folks are working hard and doing their best, but is this the time to rethink everything?
  • Georgia: Wow. I did not see that one coming. And it seems much of the credit in some areas is due to Stacey Abrams who helped motive and register almost 800,000 new voters. Incredible work.
  • Arizona: A traditionally republican state, and the home of the late John McCain, is on the brink of turning blue for Biden. I love the fact that traditional strongholds for one party are suddenly in play. It's a good thing for our democracy that more places are up for grabs.
  • Pennsylvania: I've never been more proud of Pennsylvania, a state that I called home for four years. It looks like, perhaps as early as today, PA could be the deciding factor. Cheers to my old friends in Philadelphia and around the state.
  • The Daily: The podcast from the NY Times has been very informative and helpful to have a daily recap of everything going on with the election. The Times' coverage of everything has been very good this year, and The Daily is at the top of my list.
  • Lastly, Texas. We almost did it. Strangely it seems that one of the major reasons Texas stayed red was a surge of Hispanic voters in southern counties voting for Trump. I wouldn't have predicted that one.

Here’s hoping we get some resolution and can move on from the election this weekend.