The electors are making their official votes today, formalizing the victory of Joe Biden in a presidential race still improbably being contested in the courts by Donald Trump.
With only the formality of a Congressional acceptance of the results left before the Democratic winner stands on the podium with his hands on the Bible to be sworn in, one would think that the reality of Trump’s defeat would begin to sink in with his irrational supporters who are still spouting the same anecdotal reports of minor irregularities in one locale or another as an excuse to reject the will of an over seven million vote majority.
The first sign of a crack in the armor of Trumpian delusion, the canary in the coalmine for the defeated president and his fanatical followers, came today when an anchor on Newsmax uttered the following words:
“Electoral College votes are being cast today,” John Bachman proclaimed. “Here’s video from four states, New York, New Hampshire, Arizona, and Illinois, all certifying the election for President-elect Joe Biden.”
It was a casual, back-handed way to announce that Donald Trump had failed in his multiple efforts to reverse the results of an election that he has called fraudulent without being able to provide a single verifiable piece of evidence to back that characterization outside of its undesirable outcome for himself.
Perhaps the executives at Newsmax had hoped that, by slyly slipping in the descriptor of Biden as President-elect, their viewers somehow wouldn’t notice that the channel favored by the most extreme right-wing amongst Trump supporters had effectively admitted that the man singlehandedly responsible for their newfound audience had actually lost the election.
It was a rare concession to reality for Newsmax which has spent most of the airtime since November 3rd propagating Donald Trump’s insane conspiracy theories claiming that he won the election…if you count “legal votes.”
It didn’t take very long for Newsmax to return to form as Bachman immediately turned from reporting on the electoral college votes to bashing Biden by bringing up the subject of his son Hunter and starting what will likely be the attack dog template for right-wing media as they adjust to the new Democratic regime.
“But what about Hunter Biden’s role in all of this? And will anyone ask some serious questions about the former vice president and future president-elect,” the Newsmax talking head questioned.
Newsmax had earlier hinted that it would be forced to drop its promise not to recognize the legitimacy of a Biden victory in a post on its website late yesterday.
“Newsmax and many other critics of the election results will accept the declaration of the Electoral College of the new president-elect,” an article on the site stated. “Still, Newsmax plans to continue its coverage of Trump’s challenges to the results and any new evidence of voting irregularities.”
Newsmax, OAN, and Fox News will all have to reckon with how to adjust to a world where the party in power is not the one they, and presumably their viewers, support.
Whether they continue to prosper as opposition media remains to be seen, particularly now that Fox News isn’t the only reactionary media outlet in town any longer.
Perhaps Fox News has the best chance at surviving the transition reasonably seamlessly since they had eight years of practice attacking the Obama administration on a daily basis and stoking the Tea Party minions.
Still, Newsmax’s initial move to acknowledge the reality of the Biden administration garnered a batch of mostly cynical comments on social media.
With only 37 days left until the new era begins, make sure that Joe Biden can start his administration with the full cooperation of Congress.
Consider donating to the campaigns of the two Democratic candidates in the Georgia Senate runoffs, John Ossof and Rev. Raphael Warnock, to help prevent the kind of GOP obstructionism that President Obama faced from a Republican Senate.
You make your donation at this link.
Original reporting by Justin Baragona at The Daily Beast.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.