There is no question that President Donald Trump has the right to challenge the perceived results of this year’s presidential race.

Counting all the votes from the Nov. 3 general election is mostly completed in every state. And the margin by which former Vice President Joseph Biden appeared to have won in some jurisdictions is relatively small.

As of Thursday afternoon, he is ahead by 13,558 votes in Georgia, where a statewide recount is underway. An even narrower lead is on display in Arizona, where Mr. Biden enjoys a bump of 10,457 votes. His lead in Wisconsin is by 20,565 votes.

However, Mr. Biden has pulled much further ahead in other battleground states. He leads by 33,596 votes in Nevada, 82,288 votes in Pennsylvania, 157,772 votes in Michigan and 232,562 votes in Minnesota. He is ahead in the popular vote by more than 5.9 million ballots.

If these numbers hold up, Mr. Biden will have secured 306 electoral votes (270 are needed) to become our next president. This would leave 232 electoral votes for Mr. Trump.

The president’s supporters have correctly pointed out that votes are still being counted in all states. In addition, they are right to say that news organizations lack the authority to declare a winner.

The election won’t be decided until every state certifies its results (California will end this process Dec. 11), those selected for the Electoral College cast their ballots (Dec. 14) and members of Congress count the votes of the electors (Jan. 6). So there’s still a ways to go before anything is set in stone.

Mr. Trump’s campaign and other Republican officials have filed lawsuits in various states questioning the legitimacy of these elections. They’ve made claims of rampant voter irregularities and dubious activity by Democratic authorities. They hope to prevail in enough key states to overturn the anticipated outcome.

Time will tell if they succeed in shifting the momentum in Mr. Trump’s favor. Anything is possible, so we need to prepare for this scenario.

But while Mr. Trump may turn the tide of this election, it’s incredibly unlikely. There are several factors that demonstrate this.

The first is the lack of evidence of widespread voter fraud. Numerous cases have already been dismissed because the plaintiffs haven’t presented anything conclusive. Their assertions are based on unsubstantiated rumors and outright falsehoods rather than on documented examples — nothing suitable for this kind of proceeding in a court of law.

Given this lack of evidence, overturning the election results is highly improbable. Mr. Biden’s lead in most key states is simply too large for Mr. Trump to overtake.

Karl Rove, who served as senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to former President George W. Bush, recognizes the obstacle that the Trump campaign must climb to claim victory.

“There are only three statewide contests in the past half-century in which recounts changed the outcome: the 1974 New Hampshire Senate race, the 2004 Washington governor’s contest and the 2008 Minnesota Senate election. The candidates in these races were separated, respectively, by 355, 261 and 215 votes after Election Day,” he wrote in a column published Nov. 11 in the Wall Street Journal. “To win, Mr. Trump must prove systemic fraud, with illegal votes in the tens of thousands. There is no evidence of that so far. Unless some emerges quickly, the president’s chances in court will decline precipitously when states start certifying results as Georgia will on Nov. 20 followed by Pennsylvania and Michigan on Nov. 23, Arizona on Nov. 30, and Wisconsin and Nevada on Dec. 1. By seating one candidate’s electors, these certifications will raise the legal bar to overturn state results and make it even more difficult for Mr. Trump to prevail before the Electoral College meets Dec. 14.”

Mr. Trump has so far declined to concede the race to Mr. Biden. The U.S. Constitution doesn’t require him to do this, so once again he’s exercising a right that he possesses.

While Mr. Trump doesn’t have to make a public pronouncement of defeat, he should allow Mr. Biden access to pertinent information during the transition. Obstructing this process could well imperil our national security. And in the midst of the novel coronavirus pandemic, it may deter Mr. Biden’s ability to develop a comprehensive plan for reversing the rising rates of infection.

There’s little prospect of Mr. Trump earning a second term as president. He should at least make it easier for Mr. Biden to prepare for his incoming administration, and more Republican officials such as U.S. Rep. Elise M. Stefanik need to urge Mr. Trump to do so. This will greatly benefit the country, which should be the goal of all Americans regardless of whom they supported this year.

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(27) comments

rdsouth

Trump's efforts to subvert democracy scare me, but you know, maybe it's good for us to get exposed to this. The potential was always there and maybe this light dosage will vaccinate us.

hermit thrush

here's hoping you're right but i personally am not optimistic. people have short memories and the gop base is ferocious.

Holmes

Hmmm, it looks like these commenters forgot when Hillary Clinton said”Joe Biden should not concede under any circumstances”. Once again, the hypocrisy of the left is truly immeasurable..

KRobbins

Hillary Clinton said”Joe Biden should not concede under any circumstances”.

So what?

KRobbins

If the situation was reversed Joe would’ve conceded 2 weeks ago.

KRobbins

Trump’s a whiner and a sore loser, aside from the pretensions to autocracy. No quotes from Hillary are going to change that.

hermit thrush

if hillary clinton is now calling on trump to concede, then yes, depending the details, that might make her a hypocrite. feel free to criticize her, since we all know that nothing gets right-wingers' juices flowing like hating on the clintons. but it is absurd to say that she speaks for everyone on "the left." sen. durbin immediately decried what she said: “I respect her, I like her, but I think she’s flat-out wrong.” clinton herself conceded the day after the election four years ago, despite that race being much closer. and like krobbins says, all of us know biden would have conceded long ago if the current situation were reversed.

Pitbull

If there's someone I respect less than Hillary, its Richard Durbin. He goes by a nickname but NNY360s software wouldn't allow it!

hermit thrush

you are entitled to your opinion about durbin but so what. he's the second-ranking democrat in the senate. the fact that he immediately went against what hillary said goes to show that it's not "the left" being hypocritical.

KRobbins

I’m thinking since the folks on the right feel so free to extrapolate everything any Democrat to be the stance of every Democrat they won’t mind the same being done with incoming Reps Greene and Cawthorn. In addition, Republican pols are still going to have to kowtow to every lunatic urging of Trump. And he’s forsaken Fox for the crazier confines of Newsmax and OANN. I saw a clip of one of his lawyers, Sidney Powell, on Newsmax. It was full-on insane. Something about the voting machines and Hugo Chavez and probably the Klingon High Command. Also, best off she was railing about Gov Kemp of Georgia having insufficient loyalty to Dear Leader. So, he may have a primary challenger in 2022. Certainly gonna make Stacey Abrams smile.

Yeah, I know, Pitbull. You don’t like Abrams either. 😢

KRobbins

Having overweighted votes from low population red states now isn’t enough for the GOP. Now they want a Republican legislature from Michigan to overturn the will of the people in that state.

KRobbins

I have a bridge to sell anyone who thinks What’s His Name will ever stop whining about having been the victim of MASSIVE VOTER FRAUD. He’s under the impression that he’s always been a winner just because he was lucky enough to be born rich. Six bankruptcies, 2 or 3 failed marriages and a good look in the mirror should convince him he’s not a winner.

Holmes

Can someone show me where in the Constitution it states that the media declares the POTUS? Come on man, the GAO cannot release transition money until the election is certified or Trump concedes. Keep in mind that it took Al Gore 37 days to admit he didn't actually win the election.

KRobbins

The 2000 election came down to 537 votes in one state. Biden is ahead by over 10,000 in every state superlawyer Guiliani is trying to get overturned in this attempted coup. And no one state would even change the result.

The media aren’t “declaring the POTUS” they’re reporting. Hillary conceded the day after the election because she’s not a whiny, petulant little man-baby who’s never been said no to. He’s a great role model for kids. “Hey kid, you didn’t lose. Just cry because the other team cheated, the officials were bad and Daddy needs to buy you a better bat and glove.” Raising Trumpian kids.

Holmes

Hillary has been ‘whiny’ for the last 4 years.

KRobbins

Note the lack of examples.

Pitbull

No, if you would listen to them, Kr, they say things like, "CNN is now declaring Joe Biden the winner in xx." They are "declaring" all right.

KRobbins

No, if you would listen to them, Kr, they say things like, "CNN is now declaring Joe Biden the winner in xx." They are "declaring" all right.

I don’t watch TV at all. It’s a waste of life.

You’re aware there are different meanings of the word declare? A declaration by CNN has a different meaning than a declaration by an official government body.

hermit thrush

can you show me where in the constitution a candidate conceding has anything to do with determining the winner of any single election? just because trump won't concede has nothing to do with anything. that biden won is clear. the transition should proceed. if some some crazy miracle happens down the road, then guess what, you can halt the transition process then. but to not start the transition process now is insane and harmful to the country.

Holmes

Nothing is more “harmful to the country “ than a Biden WH...

Holmes

What’s insane is a Biden WH

KRobbins

To Trumpers a Biden WH probably does look insane and Rudy’s hair dye malfunction, lie-a-thon, couptastic press conference yesterday was perfectly normal.

To the rest of us the last 4 years have been insane and embarrassing. Buck up!

hermit thrush

250,000 and counting dead from trump's botched response to covid, iran closer to a nuke than ever, north korea parading around their new weapons, hate crimes reaching new highs, corruption all throughout the government, our political culture degraded with endless lies.... yeah i think the past four years have already been spectacularly harmful to the country.

cool comeback with that "What's insane is a Biden WH," though. a real zinger.

Pitbull

Glad you recognized the possibility of a "crazy miracle".

Pitbull

Buck up, Holmes! Krobbins said so!

Pitbull

No hermit, NoKo is in trouble as is Iran. The mideast is more peaceful than most of my lifetime. You have NO IDEA how to stop a pandemic. Lets see...anything else I can debunk from your fantasy diatribe?

hermit thrush

North Korea displays 'massive' ICBM at military parade
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-54491657

See the new weapons unveiled at North Korea’s military parade
https://www.defensenews.com/global/asia-pacific/2020/10/12/see-the-new-weapons-unveiled-at-north-koreas-military-parade/

North Korea has 'probably' developed nuclear devices to fit ballistic missiles – UN
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/aug/04/north-korea-has-probably-developed-nuclear-devices-to-fit-ballistic-missiles-un

Despite U.S. Sanctions, Iran Expands Its Nuclear Stockpile
Two years after Trump withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, Tehran has cut in half the time it would need to produce enough weapons-grade fuel for a nuclear bomb.
https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/05/08/iran-advances-nuclear-program-withdrawal-jcpoa/

in terms of the pandemic, trump could have moved heaven and earth to put in place widespread testing starting back in january and february, but he quit on us all. dealing with it as a real problem would have required him to acknowledge that it's a real problem, but the reality show conman couldn't allow that. the result is tens of thousands of needless deaths from the champion of the pro-life movement. it makes me sick.

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