After 4 long days of religiously flipping through news websites until our eyes never wanted to see the colors red and blue again, it became official: America voted against fascism. Celebrations rocked both coasts as Americans escaped what felt like the dark ages: 4 long years of waking up, checking our phones, and feeling a wave of dread when we saw a headline that hinted at the next terrible racist, sexist, or inhumane thing Trump did.
Despite the manic Twitter rants of our former presidents and the spineless simpering support of his Republican colleagues, there is no disputing the fact that on November 7, 2020 Joe Biden was officially declared the 46th president of the United States.
His win delivered a stunning defeat to Trump who will take his place as the first incumbent US president in nearly 3 decades not to win reelection, and 1 of only 11 incumbent presidents in the history of the US to not be reelected.
This election was a particularly divisive one, inspiring a record-high voter turnout that resulted in Joe Biden receiving the most votes of any presidential candidate ever. The high turnout can in large part be attributed to the passion that Trump incited in his followers, and in those who opposed him. For many Biden-supporters, their vote was less about voting for Biden and more about voting against Trump, which makes the historic turnout against him all the more impressive as a repudiation of him.
This historic moment isn’t all about rejecting Trumpism though, it’s also about our country moving forward with Biden, a career Democrat who has emphasized progress and empathy, and Kamala Harris the first Black, Asian woman to be elected Vice President. Her win, a century after women were given the right to vote by the 19th Amendment, is all the more meaningful when juxtaposed with Trump’s racist, misogynistic term as president.
Of course, Trump has continued to refuse to concede, apparently only approving of democracy when it benefits him. Like a spurned lover, he has tried to undermine our country’s democratic system with every word and step he has taken since election night, launching baseless accusations in a desperate flailing way that seems similar to that of a drowning man begging for a life vest.
Any rational person can recognize his claims as clearly fraudulent, however, his voter base, which seems to eat conspiracy theories for breakfast, has clung on to every one of his post-election words like it was written in the Bible. They rallied as Trump tweeted, “I WON THE ELECTION, GOT 71,000,000 LEGAL VOTES,” despite the fact that he again lost the popular vote, and was destroyed in the electoral college by a margin of 306 to 232.
Disappointingly, but not unexpectedly, many prominent Republican lawmakers have followed their master like sheep, remaining silent on his comments about a fraudulent election, despite the fact that he is actively undermining the system that gave them power.
Throughout the election process, Trump alternated between demanding the vote be stopped in states that he was winning, and continue to be counted in states that he was losing. His administration has already filed multiple legal challenges to the election in several states, however, many have been thrown out and none have the power to actually change the winner of the election.
In trying to suppress votes, stop legal vote counts, and inspire violent election-related protests, on top of being the first president in 124 years of American history to refuse to concede the election, Trump cements his fascist legacy.
Fascists use violence and anger to gain power. Trump regularly condones and encourages violence to fuel his political agenda. He recently defended 17-year-old supporter Kyle Rittenhouse who shot and killed 2 people on the streets of Kenosha, Wisconsin. He then supported his followers who descended on Portland, Oregon, and shot projectiles like paintballs and pepper spray at people in the street, calling the violent move, a “peaceful protest” because “paint is not bullets.”
Not to mention, “ABC News reported in May that it found over 40 cases in court pleadings since 2017 in which Trump was cited as a factor that inspired the crime.”
Similar to fascist dictators he has often incited violence, sought to jail political opponents, like Hillary Clinton, and has regularly scapegoated and attacked other groups, well, rather, every group, that’s not white, male, and Christian, with hateful actions, speech, and even policies.
While the election revealed a massive opposition against him, there notably was still a large Trump following. In fact, he received 7.3 million more votes than he did in the 2016 election, despite years of racist, sexist, idiotic bigotry, instituting dangerous, harmful policies, and even being impeached. Or perhaps, keeping his fan base in mind, it was not despite these reasons but because of them.
However, with 75,603,270 votes against him, the most against any Republican or Democratic presidential candidate ever, there is no doubt that this was in fact a repudiation of Trump by the majority of the country ready to close this shameful chapter in our history.