by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Editors at National Review Online ponder Joe Biden’s apparent victory in the closely contested presidential race.
Joe Biden appears to have won the presidential election, following a ferocious fight by President Donald Trump that defied the polls and media expectations.
The president’s supporters are understandably agonized, as the current vote counts show that Trump missed by less than 1 percent of the vote in each of Pennsylvania, Arizona, Wisconsin, and Georgia. If he has won all four, Biden will have won 306 electoral votes, just as Trump did in 2016. In order to overturn that result, Trump would need to have actually won Pennsylvania plus two of the other three. This now seems exceedingly unlikely, requiring the miscounting or invalidation of at least 60,000 votes.
Reports of voting irregularities and fraud on any significant scale have so far not stood up even to minimal scrutiny. …
… Biden is gamely trying to pretend that he has won a mandate for the policy agenda he occasionally mentioned during his campaign. That mandate does not exist, and Republicans have every reason to seek to stop that agenda from being enacted. That work should begin with an effort to reelect Republican senators in Georgia. A Republican Senate is a prerequisite both for blocking left-wing policy mistakes and for protecting some of the important policy achievements of the Trump presidency, such as a pro-growth and pro-family tax reform.
Trump also made political achievements on which Republicans should build, and left the party in far better shape than many Trump skeptics predicted. Republicans became less exclusively identified with managerial professionals during the Trump years. Republican politicians now need to internalize the more blue-collar orientation of their coalition while hanging on to many of their old supporters. That this is possible but not inevitable should be one obvious lesson of an election that has turned out to be neither a victory nor a catastrophe.