The Election Wasn’t a Blowout: That Is Very Bad News for Liberals

Patrick Tompkins
Nov 11, 2020 · 5 min read
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Image Courtesy: Al Drago at The New York Times

In 2016, I supported Bernie Sanders. In 2020, I supported Pete Buttigieg. In both races, I was ready and willing to vote for anyone who was opposing Donald Trump. Trust me, I would have voted for a literal potato if it had any letter except an ‘R’ next to it. At least a potato doesn’t have opposable thumbs and can’t tweet all day.

Don’t get me wrong; I was jubilant when I knew for sure that Donald Trump would lose the 2020 election. Hell, I had to eat crow for projecting a landslide and then watching election day turn into a perplexing nightmare. That projection was based a little on the polls, but mainly on the hope and presumption that most of the country saw the same travesty of leadership I saw the last four years.

They didn’t. And I was wrong, which left me with a frustrating conclusion that there is something fundamentally wrong with the people of this country. And then I looked to my left, and perplexed, I see everyone I know celebrating that ‘we defeated fascism!’ and ‘the dictator-in-chief is finished!’

Umm… no, we didn’t. And no, he isn’t. Trump is a symptom. He is a manifestation of a plethora of character flaws and bigoted beliefs deep inside millions of Americans. Or at the very least, and still damning, millions of Americans don’t see those beliefs and behaviors as a deal-breaker for who they choose to lead them.

Truthfully, we all have them. I certainly do. Everyone I know does. Human beings begin that way and then evolve past it. How we face those presumptions about the world and the people in it, acknowledge them, reconcile with them, and ultimately overcome them is what separates good people from not so good people.

One election is not going to change this or the circumstances that this country finds itself in. At least not an election like the one we just witnessed. This election was won by the skin of our teeth. We eeked out a win by insanely small margins. It could have easily gone the other way, with a Trump win like in 2016, had Americans not turned out in record numbers.

Think about that for a second. It took more Americans to turn out to vote in 120 years to just barely defeat arguably the worst President in the history of the United States. Is that something to be proud of? No, it’s depressing. We did something we haven’t done in over a century, and the outcome of that history was, we won by a razor-thin margin.

If that doesn’t send a shiver up your spine, then you don’t see the whole picture. Trump and Trumpism aren’t going away any time soon. They will be here in 2022 for the midterm elections. If he is still alive, Trump will run for President in 2024, trying to become a modern-day Grover Cleveland. And worst of all, a whole generation of politicians are being elected to office right now, mirroring his political persona and policies.

Like it or not, the echoes of Trump are going to reverberate through this country for decades, and from now until the lights turn out, we will have to continuously and constantly vote in record numbers to just barely defeat this. That’s not something that should be celebrated. That is something that should make you seriously question the trajectory of this country.

America is the only country where getting the most votes doesn’t automatically win you an election. If you win by a large enough margin of votes, you may then have a chance to win. We need to fix the system, and there are several changes we can make now to help improve voter engagement. But ultimately, the Electoral College has to be abolished.

Fascism, parading around in an American-flag dress calling itself a patriot, will be on the ballot in literally every election between now and forever. This means all those Americans who scurried to the polls in record numbers this cycle will need to do it again, and again, and again, and again, until they die. Otherwise, we will end up with another Trump. And I can guarantee you that the next Trump is going to be a whole hell of a lot smarter than this one.

Sidebar: Some people are worried about this Trump staging a coup. Honestly, he’s not smart enough to do it. And he doesn’t have the type of support from the military to pull it off. He would need to seize several Pillars of Power to execute a successful coup, and it's simply not possible for a man like Trump, and his compulsions, to pull off.

Honestly, I’m so happy everyone put on their war paint and rushed to the polls in record numbers to cut Donald Trump’s reign short by four years. But everyone needs to understand that this is just the beginning. The Era of Trumpism is just dawning, and we have a long, long way to go before the sun sets on this type of demagoguery.

Enjoy your five minutes of dancing, because the next battle is about to begin. We’ll start in Georgia. And it is going to be just as hard, just as frustrating, and it is going to require you to exert the same amount of effort you put into this last fight. Are you ready for that?

You better be. Because you have over 72 million Americans that voted for Trump who just suffered defeat. They are more inspired than ever to make sure their leader and his way of leadership return to the top of the mountain as soon as possible. They believe with a deep conviction that that is his rightful place.

This is the reality of the situation. Don’t pop champagne because you won a nail-biter. You got the win, great, but the next game is about to begin. Head back to the drawing board, come up with a new playbook, and figure out how you will win the next five elections. Because that’s what the Republicans are doing right now. And they are motivated.

The Purple Giraffe

Dynamic insight about politics, policy, leadership, culture, social issues, and the economy.

Patrick Tompkins

Written by

Opinions about politics, leadership, government, kaizen, among other things. Editor of The Purple Giraffe & Leadership You. https://twitter.com/the_second_pat

The Purple Giraffe

The Purple Giraffe reports on what is happening today; with a dynamic insight into politics, policy, leadership, culture, social issues, and the economy.

Patrick Tompkins

Written by

Opinions about politics, leadership, government, kaizen, among other things. Editor of The Purple Giraffe & Leadership You. https://twitter.com/the_second_pat

The Purple Giraffe

The Purple Giraffe reports on what is happening today; with a dynamic insight into politics, policy, leadership, culture, social issues, and the economy.

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