Joe Biden is planning to strike a pose as the president-elect on election night if the corporate media decides that he has an insurmountable lead, even as President Trump challenges late mail-in ballots in court.
If news organizations declare Joe Biden the mathematical president-elect, he plans to address the nation as its new leader, even if President Trump continues to fight in court, advisers tell @Axios' @mikeallen and @margarettalev: https://t.co/tXDJznHMbN
— Sara Fischer (@sarafischer) November 3, 2020
Democrats say they have “learned the lesson” of the contested 2000 election, when they say George W. Bush declared victory and “acted like the winner” while votes were still being counted and his Democrat opponent Al Gore “hung back.”
In reality, Gore, then the vice president, didn’t hang back at all. Although the networks initially called the race for Gore while the polls were still open in the heavily Republican panhandle, (costing Bush untold numbers of votes), Bush was declared the winner by a narrow margin in the wee hours of the following morning.
Gore immediately pursued an aggressive legal strategy to swing the election in his favor. He demanded hand recounts in heavily Democrat counties, believing that the manual recounts would yield enough votes to do the job.
President Trump is threatening legal action because the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ordered a three-day extension for counting mailed ballots that are received in the three days after the election.
The legal issue is whether the extension ordered by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, relying on voter protections in the Pennsylvania constitution, violated the U.S. Constitution. The argument advanced by Republicans is that the Constitution gives state legislatures — not state courts — the power to decide how electoral votes are awarded, including whether absentee ballots received after Election Day can be counted.
If the anti-Trump media declares Biden the winner, “he’ll begin forming his government and looking presidential — and won’t yield to doubts Trump might try to sow,” Axios reports.
Biden reportedly plans to address the nation on Election Night in Wilmington, Delaware.
Biden campaign manager Jen O’Malley Dillon said Monday that even before all the votes aren’t counted, the campaign should have “a very good sense of where we’re headed.”
“We’re not really concerned about what Donald Trump says. … We’re going to use our data, our understanding of where this is headed, and make sure that the vice president is addressing the American people,” she said.
To show momentum, Biden may begin transition announcements quickly, starting with senior staff appointments.
That way, core aides won’t have to worry about their own jobs, but will immediately be able to get to work.
Biden plans to adopt what one confidant called “a healing tone,” and begin talking about the path forward in battling the coronavirus.
Look for Biden to embrace science, and talk up the role of Dr. Anthony Fauci, after Trump threatened Sunday to try to fire the trusted official.
There was no mention in Axios’ report of how the media plans to proceed if Trump looks like the winner on Election night, but most Republicans assume they will accuse the president of executing a coup if he dares claim victory.
Even so, the Trump campaign said in a call with reporters that the president could declare himself as the winner as early as Tuesday night if results show that he’s ahead.