After days of counting ballots in multiple states, the television networks have declared former Vice President Joe Biden the winner of the 2020 presidential election.
Citing charges and suspicion of widespread voter fraud, President Donald Trump has not yet conceded the race, and is not likely to do so in the face of pending litigation and expected recounts in several key states.
Regardless of party or position, this “COVID election” has taken its toll on everyone. In some ways, it makes the “Bush v. Gore” recount of 2000 look like a quaint and simpler time, doesn’t it? That historic episode began on November 7th and didn’t end until December 12th.
American democracy often requires patience. Our system is not perfect – but it’s historically been the global standard. I certainly urge everyone to prayerfully and peacefully follow the unfolding proceedings in these next days or weeks. It’s important that we ensure the integrity of our elections, lest we devolve or deteriorate into chaos or confusion.
Despite the major, unresolved issue surrounding the presidency, broader themes are emerging from this year’s election.
We now know that once again, pollsters were wrong – and by dramatic margins. The predicted “blue wave” never happened, resulting in week-long nail-biting number-crunching.
Although critical Senate run-off elections in Georgia appear on the horizon this coming January, it also appears likely that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the GOP will retain the majority in the United States Senate. This “legislative firewall” is expected to prevent liberal ideologues from packing the Supreme Court, adding Puerto Rico and Washington D.C. as the 51st and 52nd states as well as abolishing the Electoral College.
For the first time ever, no Republican House incumbent lost reelection – and conservatives actually added seats, despite the ongoing Democrat majority. Many of the newest Republican members of the House of Representatives are ardently pro-life.
But it’s also clear that mail-in voting dramatically impacted this year’s election on multiple other fronts.
First, more Americans turned out to vote in this year’s race than ever before. By the time every ballot is counted, over 160 million people are expected to have participated – just about 65% of the electorate.
At the same time, mail balloting has clearly unleashed a myriad of problems, including processing the votes in a timely fashion as well as allowing fair and adequate oversight of the counting.
I’m puzzled by those who wholly dismiss the possibility of voter fraud in this year’s race, especially since verified examples include ballots found in dumpsters just weeks before November 4th.
Is the cheating significant enough to alter outcomes? Time will tell.
“We believe the American people deserve to have full transparency into all vote counting and election certification, and that this is no longer about any single election,” Mr. Trump stated on Friday.
Two things are simultaneously possible – that Mr. Biden received enough legal votes to win and that widespread shenanigans occurred in areas that lacked adequate oversight.
Here in Colorado, where state officials have been operating mail-in voting for years, I’m heartsick over the defeat of a late-term abortion ban, an initiative that we had enthusiastically supported. I applaud the effort of the organizers, who have repeatedly brought this issue to the electorate. Though it once again came up short, we gained over a million votes in support of protecting innocent children.
When it comes to defending life, we invoke a Churchillian attitude – we will never, never, never, never give up!
So, where do we go from here?
The Reverend William Jewett Tucker was the ninth president of Darmouth College, serving at the school between 1893 and 1909. Speaking at Carnegie Hall in 1905, Tucker suggested that good citizenship was dependent upon great citizens. He also urged Christians to be involved in politics in order to advance good causes that will lead to human flourishing.
“It is time for us to change our camping ground – to move out from ‘we ought’ to reform our cities, into ‘we can do it if we will.’”
While we work to advance Godly policies, Christian believers are called to be faithful – not always successful, remembering the Apostle Paul’s charge:
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).
Photo from kovop58 / Shutterstock.com