It’s Rigged Don, but Not As You Know It

The world is aghast as Donald Trump, the bigoted incompetent fraudster who ran as the Republican presidential nominee managed to win the US presidential election. One of his many bizarre actions was to claim that the election was rigged against him, presumably by some shadowy conspiracy orchestrated by special interests *wink wink*. Of course he has piped down about it since he actually won the damn thing, as one would expect from someone who has a childish obsession with not accepting defeat. However, I contest that he was right, the election was rigged; but not in the way that Trump left everyone to infer. Let’s cover the ways in which I felt the election was rigged in favour of Trump and the Republican Party:

  1. FBI dirty tricks: FBI director Comey staged an unconventional intervention less than 2 weeks away from polling day, suggesting that Democratic presidential nominee Clinton emails were still a problem. (I’ve forgotten what the accusation from her opponents was again, all they seem to do is scream “E-MAILS!!!1!11!!!!!!1”) Right before polling day, he then announced that there was nothing new. Why did Comey need to bring this to our attention? Why couldn’t they have investigated it in silence, like they did for Trump’s Russian connections? Oh that’s right, Comey’s a Republican and the FBI is Trumpland. They’ve put their self interest before due process and it worked: Clinton’s polling fell. This was a political hit-job of the highest order, something that the NZ Herald would be proud of.
  2. Gerrymandering: This doesn’t benefit Trump directly, but will no doubt help him as he tears the US to shreds. Very few congressional seats were up for play, in part because of the obscene amount of gerrymandering that took place. Gerrymandering is when electoral boundaries are redrawn considering local voting trends in order to maximise the number of districts that a party wins. It comes as no surprise to me that the Republican Party benefits from gerrymandering to the detriment of the Democratic Party. This could be solved in part by nonpartisan boundary allocation; however introducing proportional representation will be a more effective solution.
  3. Voter Suppression: What do you do if people don’t like you? Just make it harder for them to vote! Republican controlled states have been relentless in passing measures which make it more difficult for those who are likely to vote for their opponents to do so. Some of these measures include: purging of voting rolls, mandating ID, or under-resourcing polling facilities in “certain” areas. North Carolina received particular scrutiny for this, a state whose electors were grabbed by Trump.
  4. Electoral College: What a fucked up way to elect a president. Divide electors into groups along an arbitrary basis (by state) and then make (almost) every state winner-take-all. The effect: Clinton gets more votes, Trump gets more electors, Trump wins. Whatever happened to the idea of “majority rules”? Do the Trump supporters who see their win as a triumph of democracy care that their triumph isn’t actually that democratic?

The answer is that the Republicans don’t care about the inconsistencies in the US electoral system. As far as they’re concerned, it has done the job of helping them win. If Americans want to correct these injustices, then they are going to have to demand it, for their representatives won’t fix the system voluntarily. It can be done. New Zealand had two elections where the National Party gained fewer votes than the Labour Party, but was able to form a government because the FPP system resulted in them winning more seats. In the end, the political parties had no option but to give the public a say on electoral reform given the strong demand for it. As for voting, it takes me longer to walk to the local school to vote than it does to go in, get ticked off, vote and put the ballot in the box. I don’t even need to show ID! Take note America, that’s how it should be done.

Trump’s claims of a rigged election were not only false, they were the exact opposite of reality. His supporters are in fact not a silent majority, they are a hateful coward minority. The Republicans have won with a minority of the vote thanks to passive and active measures which are patently undemocratic.

Now the conman gets to face what should be his worst fear: having to deliver on his promises.

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3 thoughts on “It’s Rigged Don, but Not As You Know It

  1. I have to admit, I didn’t see this coming, even though the completely corrupted US electoral system clearly offered a lot of ways for this to eventuate.

    There’s been so much dishonesty, foul play and manipulation on both sides, that it’s particularly sad if a political system has little to no immunity against its own demise. Thanks for highlighting these four major flaws of the US system and ways to fix them!

    Someone told me the other day that “this was the vote of the people, against all that corrupt establishment!”. How could this be further from the truth if out of two terrible candidates, both representing the political or economic establishment, the one who wins the popular vote loses the election?!

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    • Earlier today, I was talking to family members who are all equally concerned about Trump. I raised the point that much of the economic hardship and corruption would have been the result of the policies introduced by Republicans in previous administrations. I don’t think this can be classified as an uprising against the establishment.

      This result has made it clear that centrist ideas about “being electable” are completely discredited. Hopefully, we will see progressively-minded individuals being taken more seriously in the future.

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      • Who knows how the election would have ended if the Democrats had nominated the more progressively-minded candidate? He would have certainly had the bonus of being appealing to that large group of voters who wanted to lay down the marker against ‘the establishment’. I’m not sure, though, if Americans would have already been ready for a president who labels himself as socialist.

        I think the best we could possibly expect from the Trump presidency is that it turns out to be so deceiving to many of his current supporters, that a new Bernie Sanders will get a realistic chance in four years’ time. More realistically, I’m rather worried, though, that Trump won’t be able to cause too much harm in the US, while his election could provide the momentum for Marine Le Pen to become the new President in France next year. A new era of nationalism or worse in Europe is what I’m mostly concerned about.

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