On October 3, 2020, the Las Vegas Courier-Journal editorial board endorsed President Donald Trump’s bid for reelection, touting his economic record prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The newspaper is owned by Sheldon Adelson, a billionaire philanthropist and Trump mega-donor.
Trump was decidedly defeated by President-Elect Joe Biden, but he has refused to concede, opting instead obstruct the transition process into the new administration and to file a flurry of frivolous lawsuits alleging voter fraud (for which he has no evidence).
On Wednesday, the Courier-Journal editorial board published an op-ed with a message to Trump: dude, get over it, you lost.
“It is too fitting that the Trump presidency concludes amid a babel of bluster and bravado. But the president does a disservice to his more rabid supporters by insisting that he would have won the Nov. 3 election absent voter fraud. That’s simply false,” the editorial board wrote.
Trump may “never offer an official concession to Joe Biden,” they said, adding that the Trump campaign is “within its rights to request recounts or challenge what it believes are improprieties.”
The problem for Trump, the newspaper noted, is that “here is no evidence… that fraud cost Mr. Trump the election, no matter how much the president tweets the opposite and his supporters wish it so.”
The president “would still trail in Pennsylvania even if mail-in ballots received after Election Day were discarded,” and he “would remain well behind Mr. Biden in Nevada even if unverified GOP claims of thousands of illegal votes were dropped from the tally.”
In short, even if there were instances of fraud, particularly in swing states, there would simply not be enough votes to make up for Trump’s electoral deficits.
“In fact, rhetoric from Trump surrogates alleging widespread illegal activity has been devoid of detailed evidence supporting the charge that there was a concerted effort to “steal” the election through corruption,” wrote the editorial board. “An electoral system that involves the participation of 150 million Americans will have its share of issues, but it’s an insult to reason and logic to argue that isolated irregularities constitute proof of a grand national conspiracy.”
The president’s argument simply does not add up.
“Why, if there were some orchestrated Democratic attempt to rig the balloting,” the editors posited, “did the party underachieve in congressional and statewide balloting across the country?”
That question is, of course rhetorical. There exists no grand scheme by Democrats to “rig” the election. The plain truth is that Trump is an unpopular president who failed to win enough votes:
Occam’s razor applies here. The simplest explanation is typically the correct one. Mr. Trump indeed faced an overtly hostile press, a political establishment that treated him as an enemy occupier and an opposition party that took leave of its senses at the mere thought of his existence. But Mr. Trump lost this election because he ultimately didn’t attract enough votes and failed to win a handful of swing states that broke his way in 2016.
The Courier-Journal said that Trump “can keep fighting — and no doubt will,” but that “he has nothing to lose by cooperating with President-elect Biden’s transition team. Mr. Trump expected no less from the Obama administration in 2016 even as Hillary’s acolytes floated ways to manipulate the Electoral College vote.”
Biden, the editors wrote, “deserves the same consideration today regardless of how long the president seeks to delay the inevitable.”
Sixty-nine-days until the inauguration.
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Brandon is a political writer for the Hill Reporter specializing in current events, breaking news, and scientific discovery. Brandon holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University. He lives in New York City.