She Kidnapped HERself
THE PARADE of ‘alt-media’ commentators who talked themselves blue in the face about the fix being in, in harmony with the Trump campaign’s rhetoric about the election being rigged in Clinton’s favor, were more wrong than even the establishment media, now with egg on their face for having assumed a Clinton victory was a foregone conclusion based on an aggregate of (questionable?) opinion polls which showed something more like a dead heat than a clear Clinton advantage. Clinton indeed won the (meaningless) popular vote, so mainline media prognosticators have that to fall back on, I suppose. But for the alleged conspiracy to ring true, you’d have to believe the Democrats rigged the (again, meaningless) popular vote and forgot to consider the all important Electoral College, just as, you could imagine, the analysis of (again, questionable?) opinion polling might do.
I see this all as reaction to Democrat’s one-dimensional electoral strategy: getting out the vote. Being Democrats, they roll the dice on democracy. This strategy invites dubious charges of “voter fraud,” as if millions of Democrat operatives stuff ballot boxes by voting two times, using dead people and pet names. While establishment media was clearly in the bag for Clinton, the Democratic party is simply bad at rigging elections. ‘Getting out the vote,’ just isn’t how elections are gamed. You know who is good at rigging dead-heat elections like this one? The Republicans. This election was rigged in favor of Republicans. And even if Trump didn’t enjoy the wholehearted support of the Republican Party, he benefited from their electoral strategy. Without getting too deeply into it, (but, c’mon, who’s better at gerrymandering?) the Republican strategy is three-pronged: 1. suppress the Democrat vote, 2. manipulate the system in every way possible, and 3. cheat.
The Gothamist published a ridiculously headlined and premised article, Did Russia Hack The Election For Trump? Here’s What People Are Saying…, in which they included this (provocative?) bit of statistical analysis:
The most interesting thing Beran notes is that there’s a big statistical difference between counties in Wisconsin that use paper ballots, and counties that relied only on electronic voting machines. “In paper ballot counties Obama won in 2012, the ballot county losses are 1-2%,” Beran says. “However in counties Obama won in 2012 that are purely digital, [Clinton] lost by 10-15%.”
It’s that last point that Beran makes the crux of his argument: as you can see from this map, some counties in Wisconsin use just paper ballots, while others use a mix of paper ballots and direct-recording electronic (DRE) voting machines that have voter-verifiable paper ballots. Because there was such a big discrepancy between the paper ballot counties and the digital ones, it’s possible the latter were interfered with. [Gothamist]
And the ridiculous bit:
Indeed, for hacking to take place, the Russians would have to have orchestrated a more The Americans-esque plot.
“People would be needed in the U.S.—at voting machine companies, in election offices, or, perhaps in polling places. Having Russian sleeper agents in the U.S. involved in this activity would require a much bigger investment and more long-term planning than hacking voter registration databases over the internet,” Dill said. As he points out, there’s no evidence that this is the case. (And Appel, the aforementioned Princeton professor who hacked into a voting machine, also told Gothamist he’s “skeptical” that Russians hacked the machines.) [Gothamist]
While a The Americans-esque Russian plot does seem implausible, you know who does have people in the U.S.—at voting machine companies, in election offices, and polling places? The Republicans.
Watch and/or read this: Greg Palast in Ohio on GOP Effort to Remove African Americans from Voter Rolls in Battleground State
Also, with respect to electronic voting machines:
But here’s the rub: The Republicans can only seem to pull this off in close, dead-heat elections, plying these methods in swing-states strategically to capture Electoral votes. It would seem it doesn’t work when voter turnout is high, (ie: when the Democratic Party’s less imaginative ‘get out the vote’ brute force strategy works.) Why didn’t it work this time? When they were up against Donald Trump of all people? In the words of Freddie DeBoer:
The story of this election is incredibly simple. It’s not complicated at all. An election is a popularity contest. The Democrats nominated someone who is perhaps the least popular politician in the history of American Politics. Her consistent negatives and unfavorability ratings are literally unprecedented in the history of our national politics. And that’s who the Democrats chose to nominate in an election with a uniquely dangerous opponent. [DeBoer]
Here’s the other rub: As final tallies come in, and Clinton’s lead in the (again, meaningless) popular vote widens, and people are urging her to call for recounts in battleground states, well, she can’t. She’s too corrupt. Trump’s opposition to prosecuting her might evaporate if she were to get in the way of his transition to power. She kidnapped herself.