Monday , October 18 2021

The President Versus Democracy

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This can be a darkish and harmful second for American democracy.

A sitting president has spent months telling lies about non-existent voter fraud. Now that his re-election bid is in serious trouble — however with the result nonetheless unsure — he has unleashed a new torrent of falsehoods claiming that the opposite facet cheated. He has demanded the Supreme Courtroom intervene to determine the election in his favor.

His supporters are staging protests in Arizona, Michigan, Nevada and Pennsylvania meant to intervene with legit vote counting. In Phoenix, some have confirmed up on the State Capitol with weapons (as you possibly can see in this short video taken by my colleague Simon Romero).

The worst democratic end result — through which judges appointed by the president’s political occasion intervene to overrule the obvious will of voters — appears more likely to be prevented. The Supreme Courtroom has proven no indicators of halting vote counts, and Joe Biden’s leads within the decisive states may end up being large enough to keep away from the election hinging on the kind of ballot-counting trivia (like hanging chads) that determined the 2000 lead to Florida.

However President Trump’s actions are nonetheless inflicting important injury. They undermine his supporters’ religion within the nation’s authorities. Additionally they undermine the credibility of the US around the world. They usually power election officers, journalists and social-media platforms to decide on between telling the reality and sounding nonpartisan; it’s unimaginable to do each about Trump’s election claims.

Within the easiest phrases, the president of the US is attacking American democracy in an effort to stay in workplace.

For extra: Dahlia Lithwick, Slate: “We’re as confounded immediately concerning the lies as we had been in 2016. We ignore them on the peril of democracy; we interact with them on the peril of our sanity.”

Susan Glasser, The New Yorker: “There have been many instances, over the previous 4 years, that masking Trump’s Washington felt like a international task to me, by no means extra so than whereas driving across the capital these previous few days and seeing boarded-up storefronts and streets cordoned off for blocks across the White Home, in anticipation of unprecedented post-election violence. I’ve seen such scenes earlier than, in locations like Azerbaijan and Russia. That is Trump’s America. It’s not the America I’ve identified.”

Steve Vladeck, College of Texas regulation professor: “For anybody complaining concerning the ‘late’ shift in totals towards Democrats in MI, PA, and WI, most of these votes really got here in *first.*” However Republican-controlled state legislatures refused to permit the counting of mail ballots as they arrived.

Nicholas Kristof, a Occasions Op-Ed columnist: “If Biden wins after this poisoning of the chalice, he’ll inherit a badly divided nation after an election that many will deem illegitimate, and it will likely be more durable to manipulate and tougher for the US to exert affect all over the world.”

Morning Reads

  • Lives Lived: Three many years after turning into the primary Black pupil physique president at Penn State College, H. Jesse Arnelle helped begin one of many first minority-owned company regulation corporations in the US. “It was an audacious plan,” Arnelle informed The New Yorker in 1993. He died at 86.

Subscribers make our reporting doable, so we may also help you make sense of the second. In case you’re not a subscriber, please consider becoming one today.

This chicken Marsala is easy to make because of a fast sauce of mushrooms and shallots. Serve it over some linguine or with roast potatoes.

The most recent hit Netflix collection is about chess. Set within the 1950s and ’60s, “The Queen’s Gambit” follows a prodigy from an orphanage as she turns into an elite participant. Tailored from a 1983 novel, the collection depicts a world that’s each glamorous and wrenching, as Beth — performed by Anya Taylor-Pleasure — excels in a male-dominated sport whereas fighting habit.

“In case you did it as a film, it turns into a sports activities film: ‘Is she going to beat the Russian man?’” Scott Frank, the collection co-creator, informed The Occasions. “And that’s not what the ebook is about. For me, it’s concerning the ache and price of being so gifted.”

The pangrams from yesterday’s Spelling Bee had been archival, archrival and chivalric. Immediately’s puzzle is above — or you possibly can play online you probably have a Video games subscription.

Right here’s today’s Mini Crossword, and a clue: Snowman’s neckwear (5 letters).

Thanks for spending a part of your morning with The Occasions. See you tomorrow. — David

P.S. The phrase “reshook” — about Election Day’s twists and turns — appeared for the primary time in The Occasions yesterday, as famous by the Twitter bot @NYT_first_said.

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