13 days ago this country held an election, and the dude currently in the White House lost. Yeah, it took a few days for media outlets to call it—it happened the following Saturday, if you somehow forgot the one good day of 2020—but before I went to sleep on election night (or, uh, very early the morning after election night) it was clear that Biden was taking a lead in enough states to win the election. And yet here we are, almost two weeks later, with a lame duck president doing everything he possibly can to deny the results and cast doubt on Biden’s status as president-elect, and a fully post-constitution Republican party following him every step of the way.
Trump filed a series of lawsuits in the states that he’s contesting, and quickly lost most of them. He also demanded recounts, and as soon as Georgia (Paste’s home state, and one whose entire local government and election apparatus are overseen by conservative Republicans) started one, Trump called it a sham. Nothing short of just throwing the entire election out wholesale and calling Trump the winner will please the guy. He knows he’s lost, and will do everything he can to demean, disparage, and devalue the process that proves it.
And of course, right-wing media fully supports this unconstitutional attempt to blow up the election. Trump has repeatedly torn Fox News apart on social media because its slightly more serious newsroom and daytime hosts have acknowledged Biden as the election’s winner and hosted guests who have criticized Trump’s antics, but the channel’s opinion hosts—i.e., the ones who bring in the ratings and make the money and hog the spotlight—are all 100% in support of Trump’s destructive tactics. Meanwhile Trump has helped rocket two sub-Fox right-wing news sites, OANN and Newsmax (yes, the same as the long-running conspiratorial website), to prominence among his base by tweeting about them incessantly as they join in Trump’s campaign to undermine the electoral process. The only news Trump accepts is full-throated, pro-Trump propaganda, and there are now two channels that you probably didn’t even know were in your cable package (or, if you’ve cut the cord, your parents’ cable package) that fill exactly that role.
But hey: don’t take some random, replaceable, totally faceless writer’s word for it. Here’s John Oliver, comedy man and HBO star (or is it HBO man and comedy star?), and his entire face, running through the whole disgusting catastrophe. It’s the same infuriating, depressing information, but funny, and with a great aside about an entirely yellow turtle that science just discovered. Check it out below, if you can handle the ever-increasing stress levels required to make it through 2020.