12/7/2020--Yesterday, Ross Douthat was given a whole page in the New York Times to discuss the willingness of millions of Americans to accept the idea that the 2020 election was stolen. And it was very good and helpful. He is on the right, but he admits he is not the person who can be helpful in debunking this narrative because he works for the New York Times.
Bill Barr, our Attorney General, could be helpful. That is why his quoted comment to the AP, “to date, we have not seen fraud on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election” and, on allegation that Dominion voting machines switched votes from Trump to Biden, the
feds “have looked into that, and so far, we haven’t seen anything to
substantiate that” are infuriating.
These namby-pamby not quite denials are cowardly and dishonest. They are the kind of comments that lead Steve Kelley, in a cartoon in the Post-Gazette about giving change, to write, "Maybe there are some counterfeit bill, but not enough to matter."
Any fraud is a crime. So how about quotes like these, We're still investigating but we haven't found any fraud yet. If we do, we will put anyone involved in jail. Certainly there was no national conspiracy for Biden. And the machines were fine. That allegation is not true.
That is actually the substance of what he said, but he did not want to anger Trump anymore than he had to.
And it's not just Barr. I have been disappointed in the silence of influential people on the Right who say they care about the Constitution--law professors like Randy Barnett, Josh Blackman* and Michael McConnell--Federalist Society bigwigs, to denounce these claims. To say simply, they're not true, Biden was elected and it's dangerous to promote these lies.
Because it is dangerous. If millions of ordinary Americans believe the election was stolen, why would they not support a military coup or an assassination? Wouldn't it be the patriotic thing to do? People on the Right ran a great risk in electing Donald. They did it because they could get things--the Supreme Cour, deregulation, the end of the Iran deal. They thought the Constitution would endure, that those of us afraid that Donald would destroy it, were paranoid.
Well, he's destroying it right now, in front of our eyes and they are dong nothing to stop him.
*Not that Josh reads this blog, but today, 12/10, he was quoted calling the Texas lawsuit frivolous. I'm sure the Justices did not need him to say it, but that is surely the end of it. So, Josh at least gets off my list of those who would not defend constitutional democracy.