Trump Lost the Election and Won the Presidency. What Does That Mean?

Trump Lost the Election and Won the Presidency. What Does That Mean? November 17, 2016
Photo Source: Flickr Creative Commons by Mobilus in Mobili
Photo Source: Flickr Creative Commons by Mobilus in Mobili

I said a few days ago that President Elect Trump won the electoral college but lost the popular vote in what was essentially a tied election. Now, I’m going to take that back.

This election was not tied. It was close, but decisive. Secretary Clinton’s margin in the popular vote has risen to over a million votes and, as the paper ballot absentees are being counted, keeps going up. We’ve only had a few “minority” presidents (presidents who win the electoral college and lose the popular vote) and most of them were a near miss in the popular vote. But this margin isn’t a near miss.

A million vote margin is not a tied election. It’s a decisive win.

What I’m saying is that President Elect Trump lost the election. He lost it soundly, thoroughly and absolutely. But he won the presidency.

I have questions as to the mechanics of how this happened. One of those questions is whether or not the paper absentee ballots are as far out of line with the machine votes as it seems. That can happen, but usually doesn’t, at least not to the extent that this seems to be.

I’ve read comments that Secretary Clinton’s margin of victory in the popular vote is “unprecedented” in elections where the electoral college elects instead of the people. That is both true and not true.

It is true that no other candidate in our history has ever lost by this many votes and still become president. But Rutherford B Hayes managed to win the electoral college and lose the popular vote by a quarter of a million votes in a time when our nation’s population was only 50 million people and quite a number of states that are now in the union were still either territories or no man’s land.

So, it’s not accurate to say that this situation is “unprecedented,” at least so far as the numbers are concerned. However, when President Hayes was elected, we were not at war with anybody, including ourselves. There was no question as to President Hayes’ loyalty to this country, no interference in the election by a hostile foreign power that is run by a cold-blooded dictator bent on domination.

The situation is far different today. America is not officially at war, but we are heavily engaged in a hostile and dangerously violent world environment. America is at war with itself. We are so divided that we are coming close to being ungovernable.

And last, but certainly not least, the Russians did hack the DNC and use the emails they got to influence this election on behalf of the man who ended up with a big electoral vote win and strong popular vote loss. The Russians compromised our election process, and they did it out front and big time.

The Russian government has now admitted that they were in contact with candidate Trump’s campaign during the election. These facts raise all sorts of questions, none of them pleasant to consider.

To get back to vote totals, no one in our history as a nation has ever won the electoral vote and lost the popular vote by over a million votes. But, given the difference in America’s population between now and earlier in our history, the overall percentages in this margin have happened, at least once before. However, in that instance, the electoral vote was much closer and thus a more accurate reflection of the will of all the people.

We’ve had four minority presidents, including one who was seated by the House of Representatives.

President John Quincy Adams was seated by the House of Representatives after both he and his opponent failed to reach the required number of electoral votes. This put the election in the House of Representatives, and even though Adams lost the popular vote by 38,000 votes, the House elected him president.

Rutherford B Hayes was elected president by one electoral vote, even though he lost the popular vote by a quarter-million vote margin. President Benjamin Harrison won the electoral vote and lost the popular vote by 90,000 votes.

President George W Bush was the only president ever put in office by the Supreme Court. He won the electoral vote by one vote, when the court awarded Florida to him, but he lost the popular vote by half a million votes.

In the election we’ve just finished, Secretary Clinton suffered a clear loss in the electoral college, but is ending up with a historic win in the popular vote. A number of presidents have been elected with both an electoral college win and a popular vote margin significantly smaller than the one she holds.

What I’m saying is that President Elect Trump lost the election. It’s as plain as that. But he also won the presidency.

He’s been making claims that, if the popular vote had mattered in winning, he would have run a different campaign and won the popular vote. I have no doubt that he’s telling the truth that his campaign — and his positions on issues — would have been different if he had needed the popular vote to win.

President Elect Trump’s beliefs appear to be entirely situational. I think that what he says on any given day is a function of what he needs to say to get what he wants and how his personal pique and desire for vengeance is running.

If I’m wrong about this, it will prove itself out in the years ahead. If he turns out to be a steady-eddy, do-what-I-promised and use-my-powers-for-the-common-good kind of president, we’ll know it.

The suspense of just how bad or good he will be in office is going to end. If he betrayed this country to the Russians, we will probably be able to see that betrayal manifest itself in policies which benefit the Russians. If he really does bring back prosperity to the working and middle classes and restore us to our post World War II greatness, we’ll know that, too.

If he builds walls, stops the in-flow of immigrants across our southern border and casts out all illegal immigrants, we’ll see it happen. If he stops immigration into this country from the Middle East, it will be apparent.

If he defunds Planned Parenthood and nominates for-real pro life justices to the Supreme Court who overturn Roe v Wade, we’ll know he did it. If he loses that famous three-in-the-morning temper and launches rockets instead of tweets, I imagine somebody will tell us.

Of course, there are other things that may be more difficult to see. Will he use his powers to take vengeance on his enemies? Will he engage in profiteering for himself and his friends? Will he audit his enemies’ taxes and have the FBI investigate them? Will he turn the hacking of computers and release of private emails on newscasters, political opponents, and people who just get under his skin?

Most of these things will be hidden in the fog of lies, bad reporting and confusion that surrounds any president. If he actually does them, I imagine that fear will also become a big factor and fawning will replace critiquing in our newsrooms.

We the People have a new president elect, and he is markedly not a president elect for all — or even most — of us. President Elect Trump’s challenge is simply to do a good job and not be the total jerk that he has been throughout his adult life, including and most especially in his campaign for president. If he does that, the very frightened American people will be so surprised and relieved that they’ll fall all over him in gratitude.

He is going to have to dig down and find a whole new persona if he wants to lead this country. He’s got a lot more fences to mend than he has walls to build.

He’s a skilled performer and marketer. The question is, can he use these talents to persuade the people of this country to follow him? He’s about to learn that winning an election is just the beginning. What comes after is the tough part.

His major impediment to success as president is himself. He has convinced a large portion of the people he has to govern that he doesn’t believe in anything except doing what’s right for Donald Trump. Many of them appear to think that, if he’s talking, he’s lying, and many also believe  that he not only doesn’t care about them, he actively hates them.

He’s got to convince a big percentage of these people that they’re wrong. Because winning the presidency and losing the election won’t cut it, going forward. All that gives him is a chance — a very good chance — to earn the trust of the people by being a good president, or, failing that, making people believe he’s a good president, even if he’s not.

He may be able to get there. He’s the most successful political manipulator I’ve ever seen. But he’s got it do.

And We the People are going to get to watch him try.

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93 responses to “Trump Lost the Election and Won the Presidency. What Does That Mean?”

  1. It is not accurate to say the Trump lost the election – he DID lose the popular vote. Elections in our coutry are governed by the US Contitution which mandates the Electoral College. Since Donald Trump won the majority of Electoral College votes, he wins the election. There can be no misunderstanding here – EC=Election in our country. Want to change – try amending the Constitution.

    • I’m not arguing that. He won the presidency. But as for the election, which comprises the actual vote of the people, he lost.

          • You keep saying election but I don’t think it means what you think it means. Trump won the election, won the presidency, but lost the popular vote. Winning the popular vote does not constitute winning the election. At the national level the only votes that determine the president are those cast by the state electors.

          • I think that people are not misunderstanding you. They are merely disagreeing with you.

            In the World Series, suppose that the Cubs win four games while the Indians win three, but adding up all the runs in these seven games, the Indians have 30 runs while the Cubs have 25. Would you say, “The Cubs won the championship, but lost the World Series?”

            Your statement only makes sense if the word “election” is somehow defined as “adding up all the votes in every state”. But that’s not what “election” means. Never in U.S. history has there been any election, for any federal, state, or local office, in which the number of votes in some state are added to the number of votes in another state.* All elections have rules, and the phrase “winning the election” means winning according to that election’s rules.

            If you want to invent a hypothetical new kind of election, where all the votes are added together, and you assume that Clinton and Trump would have fared as well in that election as the one we had last week, then Clinton would have won. But even in that universe, it wouldn’t be true. If the contest had been based on total number of votes, Clinton would have campaigned in different states than she did, and so would have Trump.

            * Trivia: There is one, and only one, election in which votes in two states are added together — for the election of the President of the Navajo Nation.

            I’m not saying this to defend Trump; I detest him, and was #NeverTrump and #NeverHillary from the beginning. And I agree with you that the fact that she beat him in the popular vote will, and should, limit his claims to have won a “mandate.” But I do not think that, semantically, your terminology of “lost the election” is true, by any reasonable definition. She might have won a popular vote election, but no such election was held last week.

            • No, I’m not inventing a new kind of election. I’m trying — obviously unsuccessfully — to say that the consent of the governed is just as important as the legal election. President Elect Trump won the electoral vote, but when anyone loses the popular vote by this margin, they have failed to secure the consent of the governed. That is a massive problem when it comes to actual governance.

              • In 1860 Abraham Lincoln took 40% of the popular vote. In 1992 Mr. Clinton took about the same. So this is not such an unusual situation.

                And given how many times Trump has screwed over his economic supporters, I wouldn’t worry about him giving anything to the Russians.

            • I guess I didn’t make what I was saying clear enough. Yes. He won the presidency. No question there. But … the election is in a big sense the popular vote for the simple reason that this reflects the consent of the governed. He lost that, it appears now, by at least a million and three hundred thousand votes. That’s not just losing the popular vote, that’s LOSING the popular vote. It’s gi-normous so far as his ability to govern is concerned. I know very well that the legal election has nothing to do with the popular vote. The prize of office goes to whoever wins the electoral college. But there is that other hard as concrete election that has to do with the consent of the governed. He lost that one, big time. And when you lose that by this margin, you have, in a very real sense, lost. That is especially true at this juncture in our history when people are not just of differing opinions, they actively hate anyone who is on the other side of their opinion. His ability to govern is going to be impacted by the fact that he lost the popular election by such a huge margin. He won the legal, electoral vote and that puts him in power. But he lost the election in so far as it concerns the consent of the governed.

        • Correct — the President is elected via a system that was designed to maximize the dominance of the white race (first through slaveholding, now through racism).

  2. “A hostile foreign power that is run by a cold-blooded dictator bent on domination.” It sounds like a description of the Trump campaign.

  3. “Great changes should not be forced by slender majorities”. Jefferson

    Here, we have great changes forced by an actual minority.

    The Founders feared direct democracy, particularly in a young and weak nation susceptible to being “bought” by outsiders. (That’s why the President has to be a natural born citizen; at the Constitutional Convention it was proposed that he also have a “clear unencumbered estate” of a certain amount.) They were afraid that direct election would result in a demagogue who was a puppet of foreign interests. Ironically the Electoral College served this time to install someone the Founders most feared — a demogogue who does the bidding of Russia (whose e-mail hacks gave him a late push; also, since we don’t have his tax returns, one can guess that he’s on their payroll).

    The only good purpose I’ve heard for the Electoral College is an accidental one — the fact that it tends to exaggerate the margin of victory, and make the result less questionable, which ensures a smooth transition. That’s another thing that didn’t work out this time — in fact the winner (by a wide margin) in the Electoral College was the loser (by what will probably end up being a couple million votes) of the popular vote.

    • The alternative is exactly what the founding fathers feared. The media is bought and owned by George Soros, a foreigner with a vested interest in weakening US trade policies. Hillary is bought and owned by Saudi Arabia. She made $140 mm as Secretary of State!
      What more proof does anyone need that we were all faced with a terrible choice and everyone did the best they could with the information available?

      • I agree that we were faced with a terrible choice — although George Soros does not own the big media, look at their listings on the stock exchange, I believe that it’s more accurate to say that Time Warner and Murdock own by far the majority of the media — but having said that, yes, the choices were terrible and I do not gainsay anyone who voted for candidate Trump.

        But THE ELECTION IS OVER. What we have now is Trump. He stands — or falls — on his own. So let’s focus on him.

      • I disagree. Trump voters did not have “information available”. They were massively uninformed. And now we see that Trump is bought and paid for by the Russians and he will use his position as President to expand his business empire. (His daughter, who is now running it, sat in on his meeting yesterday with the Japanese Prime Minister.) This is actual corruption as opposed to any evidence against Clinton.

  4. “I have questions as to the mechanics of how this happened. One of those
    questions is whether or not the paper absentee ballots are as far out of
    line with the machine votes as it seems. That can happen, but usually doesn’t,
    at least not to the extent that this seems to be.”

    The absentee ballots are still coming in from mostly states that went heavily for Clinton, (e.g. California) hence the seeming disparity with the machine vote tallies.

    • I’m sure that they are coming in from states that favored Secretary Clinton, but they must also be coming in from states that voted against her. All states have absentee ballots.

      • All states have absentee ballots, true. But the rules for voting with them vary from state to state – California, for example, counts them if they are post-marked by election day. Presumably, the outstanding absentee ballots are coming from blue-tilting states. I have heard it reported as such. You also have to account for the fact that Clinton had a superior campaign organization.

  5. Even more reason to say “I will respect the office but NOT the man getting ready to enter that office. Unbelievable. Right now nothing he does or says will make me respect him. I simply do not trust him and the folks he has so far chosen to be in his cabinet are just as bad as he is. Our country is in for a very rocky 4 years. Secretary Clinton should have been making plans to take over the highest office in our land, not Trump. He sincerely wasn’t voted in by the people.

    • Yes. The democratic party that came within 50 votes of censuring me for passing pro life legislation and whose activists tried their best to defeat me in office. That democratic party.

      I criticized President Obama and I’m going to criticize President Trump. When I criticized President Obama, a lot of people thought I was a hero and wanted to hear what I had to say BECAUSE I was a Democrat who would stand against her party. Now that I’m criticizing President Elect Trump, not so much. That’s political life.

      • Some will beyond doubt. I won’t. My disagreement is merely technical, we agreed to the system long ago, and have to live with it. Or presumably change it, personally I think Nebraska and Maine have it right, rather than the winner take all that the rest use.

        There’s going to be plenty to criticize with Trump, and often we’ll say the same thing, likely. I admired you then, and I still do. I do hope Trump has learned some things, we both did over the years, such as our views on abortion indicate.

      • You are insulting the intelligence and moral character of people that voted for Trump. You can and should expect backlash.
        I held my nose and voted for Trump basically because he at least declared opposition to abortion, rather than Hillarys outspoken support for it. I voted for Trump because although there are allegations of this or that, he was not given a free pass by an Obama controlled justice department after they found basically criminal negligence in maintaining national security files.
        You rant and rail all you want about Trump. I may join you -but only after there is hard evidence, not a bunch of allegations fueled by a headline hungry media.
        Your indulgence of this nonsense is uncharacteristic.

        • It is certainly not my intention to insult the people who voted for Mr Trump. We had an invidious choice in this campaign. I believe without question that those people who cast their vote against Secretary Clinton — as opposed to voting in favor of Mr Trump — because of her lifelong commitment to legal abortion, were, given the circumstances, making a rational and moral choice.

          But there is no reason whatsoever to wait before looking at what his campaign behavior predicts about his presidency, or analyzing the vote that occurred, and considering what it means in real life and what it will mean to this country in the future. That is what this particular post does, and it also what Americans have done with their presidents since time immemorial. I did the same sorts of things with President Obama and nobody from either side accused me of the things I’ve been accused of for taking a critical, political look at President Elect Trump.

          People can get mad at me and call me names and rant at me all they want. I’m not changing. President Elect Trump gets the same treatment I gave President Obama. He doesn’t get a pass.

          Here are the facts:

          1. Candidate Trump won the electoral vote, which makes him President Elect Trump.
          2. Secretary Clinton won the popular vote by a margin — as of now, it’s climbing hourly — of over 1.4 million votes.
          3. That means that, while President Elect Trump won the presidency, he has lost the consent of the governed part of the election, and he lost it, big time.
          4. This de-legitimitizes his win in the eyes of a lot of electorate, and that will make it difficult for him to gain the real support he needs to govern.
          5. Both houses of Congress and most state legislatures are in his party’s column. What that means is that he can pass just about any piece of legislation he wants. But passing laws people don’t want against their will leads to resistance and big trouble. That behavior on the part of our government is what created the climate which allowed people to consider a candidate like candidate Trump in the first place.
          6. Losing the popular vote is a huge thing in this climate. It is the loss of the vote concerning the consent of the governed. It is, in essence, winning the Presidency and losing the election.

          • Thank you, Rebecca for that post above with those 6 points. I’m not a Trump fan and for the first time in my voting life, I actually have very strong feelings against the president-to-be. I have disliked other presidents, but the dislike for this man is very strong. I just get horribly frustrated with the fact that now for the 2nd time the EC has put the person in office that the majority did not elect!

        • May I ask, Jim, how you could vote for the man with the personality that Trump has, and the things he said and did during the campaign, to be the leader of this country? I get the claim made by him that he is pro-life (but I do not believe him) but was that actually the only reason you could mark his box? He has to represent this country with leaders from other countries etc. He has already met with the Japanese leader with his daughter in the room, who has NO security clearance. He has chosen some people for his inner circle who exhibit the prejudices that Trump has. Just curious. Fortunately you and I and others in our country have the right (so far) to express ourselves publicly.

          • Loathing the president is a fine American tradition. I couldn’t stand Bush41, although I got oer it.

            Insulting your fellow Americans is not so traditional. You aren’t extreme about it, but some are. I wrote in and my conscience is clear. I understand that many people struggled with their vote – for Trump and for Hillary. I can make a case against either of them, but at the end of the day, I respect the conscience of each person. Yours, too.

            It should be noted that another election is two years away. Questioning people’s integrity is not the way to win votes.

            • Merely asking a question of Jim Dailey. There was no insult intended. He obviously had, as we all do, the right to vote for the person he wished. Hope you have a great Thanksgiving! I’m thankful that Rebecca is able to post again and that we “regulars” are able to comment .

  6. “The Russian government has now admitted that they were in contact with candidate Trump’s campaign during the election. These facts raise all sorts of questions, none of them pleasant to consider.”

    The fact that Trump’s new national security adviser Flynn was in contact with the Russians while he was attending security briefings with Trump and the above comment are downright terrifying – and I don’t scare easily. Doesn’t this border, at best, on treason?

  7. I don’t see the utility of going on that he lost the election. For one thing, 1 million votes is less than about 8/10s of one percent of the votes cast. Infintessimal.

    Trump is the President Elect. Period. 8 years ago, conservatives were saying “not my president” about Pres. Obama. Heck, I read a comment to that effect last week. It’s silly with one and silly with the other.

    I am not happy with him, no more than I would have been happy with her. I’m reading Megyn Kelly’s book Settle for More and the Trump she describes is scarier than anything you’ve written about him. He is vindictive to the hundredth power. Dangerous vindictive. However, he has also brought political opponents – Ted Cruz, Mitt Romney, Nikki Haley – in, presumably to discuss a role in his administration. So maybe he’s listening to good advisors.

    At any rate, the election is over. Life goes on.

    • Yes, the election is over … sort of. When anyone fails to secure the popular vote by this margin — and it’s growing daily — they have a big problem. He won the election for the presidency by securing the electoral vote. He lost the election for consent of the governed. Right now, it’s a million, three hundred thousand people. That’s a huge number of people when you’re talking about the reality of trying to govern this country, especially in this political climate. He won the prize. And he lost the consent of the people.

      • Rebecca, you know I respect you greatly, but three days later, I still have no idea what “he lost the consent of the people” means. Nothing in constitutional or civil law gives content to that sentence

        • Ken I guess it’s a difference in the way I look at things as someone who has held office. I wasn’t referring to the Constitution or the law. I was referring to whether or not the people would accept him as president and whether or not he would be able to govern Losing the popular vote by what is now almost 2 million votes is a very big deal in that it means that the people themselves did not elect him, he was elected by the electoral college … how can I explain this? When someone runs for office, they focus on winning the election. But if they win, they are usually really surprised to discover that the election they just won was only the prelude to the real election, and that this one is much tougher. They have to earn the support of the people they represent because if they cannot, they will not be able to stand on issues. They’ll be like someone standing on a piece of plywood that is balanced on a bunch of marbles on a glass floor. Add to that the reality that they are going to be dealing with a lot of powerful people who have their own constituencies to consider, anyone of which can tell them to go take a long walk on a short pier and mean it. Even the president is faced with dealing with a Congress that can tell him to get lost, as well as a lot of other people, including heads of state. Without solid support from their constituency, they will be unable to function. If, by some fluke, the manage to get elected but actually lose the vote of the people, their platform is standing on very slick marbles, riding on very slick glass indeed. Winning the presidency without the consent of the governed is a serious problem for whoever does it. It is, in a very real way, winning the presidency, but losing the election.

          • Well, we’ll see.  FWIW,  I expect he will resign or be impeached within a year or two. 

            And yes,  Congress should check him.  That’s their job.  We’ll see if they do it.

            Best for Thanksgiving to you and your family.

            • Anything is possible, Ken. However I think I tend to worry almost more if Pence was in office, which I assume would occur if Trump decides to resign. Personally I think his ego will not let him resign.

    • I don’t see the utility of going on that he lost the election. ”

      Just a thought – given his paranoia before the election, what do you think Trump’s reaction would have been if the situation were reversed? If Clinton had won the electoral vote and lost the popular vote by such a margin. Trump was threatening armed revolution in so many words before the vote if it had happened to him.

      As for good advisers, he’s already appointed racists and rabble-rousers to significant positions, some of which, thank God, do need to be confirmed by Congress. And his family – son-in-law getting security clearance? Daughter and son-in-law sitting in on meetings with heads of government? Ex-wives wanting ambassadorships? None of them have any government experience. They seem to be acting as if the White House is part of their business. To be fair, I honestly don’t have a problem with qualified family members taking active or advisory roles to a president, especially in an office where they need to prove their qualifications for the job. But I can’t think of any president who seemed to need his whole family involved in picking Cabinet members, etc.

    • IMO, and it may be just me, but at least Hillary had experience and knew how to behave in public! Yes, she was far from perfect. Life will go on, but what will it be like with the people DT has so far chosen to be in his cabinet Alabama’s Sessions for one? To me he isn’t choosing anyone who will buck what he wants. As Rebecca has pointed out below, he didn’t win the people’s vote.

      • Sessions broke the KKK in Alabama by securing a large financial judgement against them. He prosecuted the head Klansman for murder and secured the man’s execution. He desegregated schools in Alabama.

        The only appointment that disturbs me is Steve Bannon. While people who know him day he isn’t a racidt, but the alt- right sure are happy about him.

  8. Rebecca, respectfully I cannot agree with your reasoning that the election comprises “the actual vote of the people.” When electing a President of the United States, that is simply not the case…the election of a President is decided in the Electoral College. The 12th Amendment is clear.

    Now, of course States are free to decide how the electors are to be apportioned, and all States have decided to tie this to the popular vote within their State in some way. (Nebraska and Maine apportion partly by Congressional District). But the “national popular vote” is not relevant, it is who wins each State that is.

    Assuming Mr. Trump carries the electors and they are faithful to their trust next month, he will be duly, legally, and constitutionally ELECTED President…he will have won the election (and de facto already has).

    Whether we like this system or not is irrelevant to the fact of the matter, and Mr. Trump’s lack of character, about which you are very much in the right, does not take away from the fact that he did (will have) in fact, win the election.

    It’s the political scientist in me, I can’t help it. I do have a degree in this stuff. Forgive me.

    • I understand that winning the electoral vote constitutes winning the office. What I am saying is that by losing the popular vote by this margin, he lost the consent of the governed, and he lost it, big time.

    • You may also want to comment on the tyrrany of the majority, and our founders wise rejection of such a simplistic democratic system. It shockingly appears that Rebecca of all people needs to be reminded of the dangers inherent in that type of governance.

      • No Jim. I’m aware of that. But that isn’t what we are dealing with now, at this time. I’m commenting on the reality that is in front of us.

  9. “I have questions as to the mechanics of how this happened. One of those questions is whether or not the paper absentee ballots are as far out of line with the machine votes as it seems. That can happen, but usually doesn’t, at least not to the extent that this seems to be.”

    Perhaps the rumors, all over the Northeast, are true. Perhaps there *were* warehouse sweatshop operations of fake absentee ballots being marked for Clinton.

    But if “None of the Above”, the effective decision to disband the federal government, was counted, it was the clear winner in the three way race with 49% of registered voters deciding not to vote.

  10. Here’s my question: this post is one of a number of them (not on partisan sites, but experienced people honestly asking) I’ve seen saying that these results are unusual to say the least. My question is, how do we verify? Who goes back behind and checks to make sure that the electronic votes are accurate and that there was no manipulation? Because if we’re only relying on individual counties to secure their voting machines and their networks, it seems to me it would be comically easy to write a script that just drops one out of every ten Clinton votes.

    The tinfoil hat conspiracy theorist in me thinks that this was exactly why Trump made such a huge deal out of the election being “rigged” – so the press would chortle and say it was impossible. This then puts them in a very difficult position to investigate if it actually WAS rigged.

    • As pointed out by Theodore Seeber, your trust in the accuracy of the popular vote count is based on your trust that the votes in highly Democratic voting areas are being counted appropriately, and are being accurately reported by a media which makes money by generating controversy.
      If we are all going to rely on media reports, I will happily go find sources reporting that Trump won the popular vote, and that all teports to the contrary are lies.
      That is, the validity of any of these popular vote count stories is at best questionable, and its ballyhooed reporting clearly accuse benefit to its reporters.

      • I can also find sources — a couple of them highly credible — asking if the Russians, who hacked into many state election boards, as well as their famous hack into the DNC, stole the election for candidate Trump. The Russians were big players in this election and it appears that the candidate they wanted won.

        As for ballot stuffing. These are paper ballots, no machine ballots. That plays heavily into raising questions about the Russians fixing the elections. If they’re being counted incorrectly, it’s entirely possible to re-count them. In fact, they can be re-counted many times.

        Personally, I think, given the Russian hacking, that we should consider taking our elections entirely off the grid.

        • Actually, I agree about the return to paper ballots, although improper ones were the subject of much controversy a few years ago in Florida. But I’m less worried about the Russians (who may well favor Trump as somebody they can do business with rationally) as I am concerned with domestic political operatives, maybe partially because I grew up in Northwest Indiana watching how Chicago ran, and still does. No, I don’t mean strictly Democrats either, in a basically full on Red state, Republicans are little, if any, better.

          Nor do I think it wise to correlate Wikileaks without proof, and I haven’t seen any, with a Russian intelligence operation.

          • I grew up in western Kentucky watching Southern Illinois try to outdo Chicago in creative voting to win Illinois state elections.

        • In Indiana we mark paper ballots the way you take multiple choice tests and then they are all machine read. If there’s a problem or a question you can always check the papers.

  11. Rebecca I have a question for you. A lot of people are quite reasonably terrified that the KKK is celebrating his political victory. Is that affecting Catholics much? Because I know the KKK has targeted Catholics as unAmerican. I know there are Jewish and Muslim groups already forming coalitions to protect each other. Do you see the same urgency in Catholics?

    • I don’t know the answer to that Hilary. The Catholics I know personally don’t appear to be concerned about it. It is true however that the KKK historically attacked Catholics, along with Jews and African Americans.

  12. kind of like winning a baseball game but giving up more hits- or winning a football game with fewer yards of total offense- i.e. YOU WON. The rules existed before the game, everyone knew them & everyone played by them. It is foolish to assume that if you change the rules all the other results will remain the same-the teams prepared for the game with the rules in mind-change the rules and you will change the way the whole game is played. BTW the SCOTUS did not choose GWB- he won. A recount done with the rules Gore wanted was performed (by a coalition funded by newspapers) & the result was that even if Gore had won the case he would have lost the recount using the rules HE wanted. It is true they also found that you could alter the result of the recount if you played with the rules-ie some scenario could be concocted that gave Gore a win in Florida-but the rules Gore sought to use wouldn’t have changed the outcome.

    • Not true. The coalition of newspapers found that Gore would have won. AND it did not consider “overvotes”, which included ballots where Gore’s name was checked *and* his name was written in. He had 30,000 more of those than Bush so the true margin of victory for Gore wasn’t that close.

  13. This is a pathetic article. You are clearly a Democrat because you are in the tank for Hillary who is the most extreme pro-abort candidate in human history. Trump says he is pro-life. End. of. Discussion. Also your analysis on the electoral college is sophmoric. Learn your history. There are reasons why we do not let the tyranny of the majority who are living in urban areas rule and run the country. California and Oregon and Washington and New York and New Jersey and Ct. (among a handful of other forlorn states – are not the country. Also in case you did not know the Dems got their clock cleaned. Presidency = check, Senate = check, Congress = check, Governor’s houses = check and soon the S. Ct. = check. It is over dear.

    • I’m going to let this through because you are new here.

      Please don’t insult people when you comment on this blog. That includes elected officials, other commenters and me.

      • I do not think I have Madam. A zealous response to your suppositions – nothing more. We can quibble with the word pathetic I suppose. However, I sense I touched a nerve. Tell me, you aver you are pro-life and I accept the premise. How do you reconcile supporting Mrs. Clinton (I will leave out her corruption for the moment) just on the issues of Life vs a Culture of Death?

        • I’ll answer this, but another thing I don’t allow is hectoring other commenters, and that includes me.

          First, I did not support Secretary Clinton. Second, she is no longer an issue. The better question is how Christians are going to manage their support of President Elect Trump’s policies, going forward?

    • “Trump says he is pro-life. End.of.Discussion”. Personally I do not believe him on that. Apparently you believe what he says and apparently many other folks did too. IMO, all Trump is is Pro-Trump and his job was and has been throughout his career was/is feeding his ego. Now we have to put up with him for the next 4 years. He may have “won” the office but not the support of much of our country.

      • You do not believe him but you ignore the words of Hillary on the subject of being all in for abortion which is as plain as day.

        • I’m repeating this and I’m going to allow the comment through because I did not give you the first warning when you made it. Do not hector other commenters. They are entitled to their opinions and do not have to justify holding them on this blog. Discuss the issues.

          • Thank you, Rebecca. I chose to answer him, as you see. Obviously you can post it or not as you choose. I trust your judgement.

        • I’m pro-choice. That isn’t news to those on this site. My choice for president wasn’t based solely on the candidate’s abortion stance. Personally, as you probably have read on my other posts, I couldn’t deal his disrespect for women, his lack of ability to control his out bursts, his racist comments, his disrespect for the reporter with a physical disability etc. I won’t go on. Hillary isn’t perfect, but at least she has had experience in dealing with people of all nations. and can control herself in public when giving speeches, I didn’t notice Trump characteristics in Hillary.

  14. What I’m saying is that President Elect Trump lost the election. He lost it soundly, thoroughly and absolutely. But he won the presidency.

    Your claim here is just nonsensical. Trump “won the presidency” because he won the election of the president. It is irrelevant that Clinton got more popular votes. The election of the president is not decided by popular votes. It’s decided by electoral college votes. You might want it to be decided by popular votes. But it isn’t.

    • Wait patiently for the screener/editor to take a break in living her life to go through the comments. I take off during the Sabbath, btw.

      I notice that your other posts are just link to columns written elsewhere. I’m going to delete all of them. This is not a place for posting other people’s columns. It is a place for saying what you think, in your own words. Do that instead of just putting a bunch of links up.

      Having said that, you are welcome to comment here. I realize that you’re new to Public Catholic and don’t know how it operates. Feel free to join the discussion and enjoy the fellowship.

  15. What does it mean? It means Democrats and liberal pundits need to stop going into close elections by assuming the smarter Democrats will probably get the electoral college while the Republicans, appealing to the good old boy masses, will just get the popular vote. The same thing was said in 2000. It was almost across the board predicted on Monday, eve of the election. And that’s twice it went the opposite way. So my suggestion? Don’t bet the farm on something that, when it goes the opposite way, must then be declared a problem.

    • I take off on the Sabbath. No work.

      Also, I do a lot of other things besides monitor this blog. What that means is that comments sometimes have to wait before they are posted. It’s nothing personal.

  16. You can look at this in different ways. However, what is important is that the USA, as an entity, is a federation of states, not a collection of individuals.

    As the federal government has siphoned more and more power which was supposed to belong to the states, it has become easy to forget this, but the electoral college (and indeed the very makeup of the Senate, 2 Senators for each state) gives us a clear reminder.

    You could say that Trump has “lost the consent of the governed”, or you could just say that California really really hates him. Take away California from the equation and Trump won the rest of the nation by 2 million votes. I, for one, am happy that California doesn’t have all of the say.

    (Full disclosure – I am NOT a fan of Trump, but I am a fan of the Electoral College.)

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