It is a formality that few paid attention to in the United States, but in the tumultuous era of “Trumpism” it takes on great symbolic value and a huge relevance institutional. This Monday the electoral college initiates the process to officially elect Joe Biden as the future president of the country and the democrat would see thus sealed at last his triumph on November 3, despite the judicial offensive and pressure from Trump to challenge the result of the polls.
The trial war launched by the president to try to reverse the elections that he denounces as fraudulent was reviled in local, state and federal courts, and even in the Supreme Court, which on Friday refused to hear a lawsuit promoted by Texas and supported by more than 120 Republican representatives.
The indirect vote
With the start of the Electoral College process, Biden will shield the result of the polls. When Americans cast their vote, they actually voted for a list of voters appointed by the political parties of their state that commit to support the candidate of that party. In other words, the formally recognized result will be that of the Electoral College votes, distributed proportionally by population among the 50 states of the country plus the District of Columbia.
In the Biden election won 306 delegates (above the minimum of 270 needed to reach the White House), while Trump obtained 232 of the total of 538. The Democrat surpassed him, in addition, by about 7 million votes.
This process is the one that will be carried out this Monday by the voters of each state: they must say who they will vote for. Although the US Constitution contemplates the case of “unfaithful voters” in some states, given Biden’s margin of advantage and the judicial rejections of fraud, it is difficult today to think of unexpected surprises that could reverse the result. Friday’s court ruling against Trump also lowered the expectations of large constituencies that they would turn in favor of the Republican.
But Trump launched on Sunday a threat veiled by Twitter: “Key states that have encountered massive electoral fraud, what are they all, they cannot legally certify these votes as complete and correct without committing a severely punishable offense, ”he wrote.
Once the count is done, the result will be sent to the president of the Senate in Washington, a position held by the vice president Mike Pence, to confirm the result on January 6, a date that sounds very far away today but that sounded consistent in the times in which it was established, when the votes they traveled by wagon from all over the country.
Subsequently, the January 20 Biden’s inauguration ceremony will be held as the 46th president of the United States, along with the vice Kamala Harris.
Congress, the last fight
Joe Biden, thumbs up. Photo: AFP
Some Republicans may try to block the process in Congress, at least to settle their position. According to The New York Times, at the forefront of this maneuver is Republican Congressman Mo Books of Alabama, who plans to discuss the outcome of Arizona, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Georgia and Wisconsin. This Sunday he tweeted: “Congress is the last referee on who wins the presidential elections, not the Supreme Court ”. But it would only be a declarative maneuver because for any action of this type to succeed it would have to have the endorsement of the majority of the House of Representatives, which is in the hands of Democrats.
In an unprecedented case in the country’s history, Trump has not yet recognized He defeats her and promises to continue fighting, although his weapons are increasingly meager. “The United States runs the risk of having an illegitimate president. But the battle is not over yet ”, he assured. “What happened to this country is as if we were from the third world,” he said in an interview with Fox and insisted that there was fraud. When asked if he would attend Biden’s inauguration as president, he said he did not want to talk about it.
With his strategy of not acknowledging his defeat, Trump seeks don’t assume yourself as a loser (something he hates) and positioning himself for a possible presidential bid in 2024. Meanwhile, he raises hundreds of millions of dollars for the court battle or his future plans.
A tight crowd protests the election result, in Washington. Photo: AFP
Beyond the judicial rejections, the idea that there was fraud has caught on among 70% of his supporters who are still excited. This Saturday in Washington there was a concentration of Trumpists where militants from the extreme right group appeared Proud Boys and that at nightfall they ended up in clashes with antifascist groups, with a balance of four wounded with a knife and dozens of arrested.
Despite the fact that Trump has obtained the support of a large part of the party in his denunciations, within there are already several Republican voices that recommend Trump to turn the page and acknowledge his defeat. The senator for Tennessee, Lamar Alexander, considered this weekend that the tycoon had no right “to go to court with lawsuits misleading and without evidence”. “The electoral process will be over on Monday if the voters vote for Joe Biden, and I hope they will,” Alexander said.
Many of the Trump legislators said that Biden’s triumph had only been declared by the media (which reported the official results) and therefore did not recognize it. If the judicial offensive is already lost and, as expected, the Electoral College ends up electing Biden, they will no longer have too many arguments not to sentence the “game over”.