Sunday, December 11, 2016

Trump's Massive Need To Overstate His Victory

James Fallows destroys the Trump transition team's propaganda:

Translation: “A long time ago” is actually one month, and “one of the biggest Electoral College victories in history” is actually one of the least impressive. Here are the facts:
  • In terms of his Electoral College margin, which will probably end up at 306 to 232, Trump will rank #46 among the 58 presidential elections that have been held, or just above the bottom 20%.
  • In terms of his popular vote margin, Trump will probably end up with the third-worst popular vote result ever, or if you prefer 56th ranked of the 58 winning candidates in history. (Obviously the 58 elections have produced 45 presidents, some of them winning two terms and FDR winning four.) This ranking is based on Trump’s losing the popular vote to Hillary Clinton by a little more than 2 percent, or a little less than 3 million votes. John Quincy Adams lost the popular vote by 10 percent in 1824 to Andrew Jackson, and also came in second in the electoral vote—but became president when the race went to the House, since none of the four candidates had an Electoral College majority. He is #58 out of 58, in terms of popular-vote mandate for winners. Rutherford B. Hayes, who won the electoral college while losing the popular vote by 3 percent to Samuel Tilden in 1876, is #57. Donald Trump, losing by 2 percent, is #56. Every president except J.Q. Adams and Hayes came to office with a stronger popular-vote mandate than Trump.
The amazing part of that press release from the transition team is that the most truthful part of the whole thing is the attack on the CIA, and the least truthful is in quotations ("Make America Great Again").  Trump will never be able to handle the fact that he won fewer overall votes than Hillary Clinton, even though he was elected president.  Even more amazing is that he won more electoral votes than George W. Bush did in either of his election victories, even though Bush won the popular vote by 2.4% in 2004.  The fact is, Trump didn't win a landslide victory no matter how you look at it, but just like when W was in office, that will in no way mitigate the damage done to the country by Republicans while he is in power.

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