GOP Cruelty Pleases Their Constituents

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I’ve said it before, and I’ll repeat it. As it is presently constituted, the GOP represents a small minority of people in this country who think being cruel to people is a virtue.

We all know about the disgraced former president. We’ve seen the hatred he spewed as president and now as a private citizen. He is the standard-bearer for this type of behavior. He’s got a group in Congress who continue to support him no matter what. And, if he’s indicted, we know that support would continue. Many of those same GOP politicians mirror the personality of their dear leader, who relishes every chance he gets to insult and lie with impunity.

And they wouldn’t do it were it not for millions of people in this country who love every minute of it. And they do not cross the former president because they know the death threats and intimidation that will come with any denunciation or criticism they might level at him. Thus, they go along to stay in power, spewing racist comments and memes, making fun of the vulnerable and needy, and calling Democrats every name in the book.

It’s not just members of Congress, of course. We’ve got crackpot governors who do the same, some with lofty political ambitions. Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida fits the bill, but so does Greg Abbott of Texas. It’s hard to distinguish which of these men is worse, but they’re doing their best to outdo the other.

If I had to rank the two, DeSantis would probably nudge Abbott out on the despicable meter, but only by a hair or two. The recent political stunt by DeSantis, gathering up asylum seekers in Texas and sending them to Martha’s Vineyard to supposedly showcase hypocritical sanctuary cities and embarrass President Biden, was one of the most brazen attempts to exploit human beings for political gain as you’ll ever see.

Again, though, why would he do such a thing? You would think most governors would never try such a stunt because of the backlash and ensuing criticism. Well, you and I would be wrong. Because we know that MAGA world and a massive chunk of the GOP are not only ok with what DeSantis is doing, they can barely hide their glee. Instead of immediately thinking DeSantis is toast in his reelection bid in Florida, I’d venture to say he ends up winning by a relatively large margin. I hope I’m wrong on that, by the way.

But it certainly would not surprise me. Florida is a large state, the third largest by population, and a state that continues to get redder by the day. Many of them are the older white folks who watch Fox News and revel in the hatred and division brought to them every night by the likes of Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity. You know the spiel; black and brown folks are coming for your jobs and are the reason for your misery. Why can’t America be like America was in 1950?

Until the current iteration of the GOP has a radical and transformational revolution within its ranks, we seem destined for things only to get worse. Our political discourse is beyond rotten and divisive. Death threats to politicians and the like are now a daily occurrence.

I want to believe in the basic decency of the American people. But what we’ve seen over the past several years, especially with the election of the number one despicable man in American politics, it’s hard to feel positive. We can argue whether Russia helped him or not. The fact is, he won and took the oath of office. We let this happen.

The only way things can change is for people to be held accountable. Trump needs his comeuppance, as does DeSantis. Trump’s legal entanglements must come to a close at some point. We can’t keep seeing investigations languishing forever. There must be an accounting; otherwise, the movement toward authoritarianism will continue. The same holds for DeSantis. If what he’s been doing isn’t illegal, something is very wrong with our judicial system. Thankfully, the Sheriff in San Antonio, Texas, is investigating the stunt. Will our Justice Department do the same?

If not, we’re doomed as a country and as a society. Politicians and the well-connected and influential cannot be above the law. We’re a nation of laws. At least, that’s what we’re told. Millions are more than willing to overlook and scoff at any crime the former president might have committed. After all, he’s their savior. He’s the guy who said what they believed. What may have been off limits before, saying racist things and treating people with disdain, is now something they feel they can express themselves.

So when Greg Abbott or Ron DeSantis want to bus migrants to Vice-President Kamala Harris’ house or ship them off to the “liberal elitist” Martha’s Vineyard, they cheer for the cruel treatment of “those” people. The fact that millions feel this way makes me ashamed to be an American, to be honest. Hell, many of them are our neighbors and co-workers. And, sadly, family members.

And it’s why the likes of Trump and his ilk say and do what they do. They wouldn’t if they thought enough people wouldn’t vote for them. In our crazy way of electing presidents through the outdated and ridiculous electoral college, you don’t have to get the most votes – only enough in the right states. With gerrymandering, they can create districts that ensure they stay in power for years.

When Barack Obama told us that we were the United States of America – not red or blue states, I believed he meant it. At the very least, he hoped that we could get to that point. Unfortunately, the former president was wrong. We’re not only far from united but also growing further and further apart as we speak.

Is there a politician who could unite this country? Is there someone who could bridge the gap between red and blue America and those who remain in the middle? Never say never, I suppose. But it sure seems like a distant and naive thought at this point.

It’s hard to reach inside someone’s heart to probe why they hate folks for no other reason than they are different from themselves. Maybe it’s the color of their skin, or perhaps it’s gender bias or religion. Whatever the case, it’s a dark place to be. And in today’s divisive climate, we have a political party that’s more than willing to exploit that hate. If it means obtaining and keeping power, nothing is off-limits.

Will we spiral into a civil war? Is that where we’re headed? I hope not, but when you have politicians like Trump and DeSantis riling up the masses, it could be where we end up. Keeping these zealots as far away from power is the only answer. The only question is, can we and will we do what is necessary to prevent that from happening?

57 comments

  1. I live in Florida and everything you said is absolutely true. Deathsantis is courting the knuckle dragging cult, as he hopes trump will be too old or too damaged to run and win. That’s the game plan. First he’ll be reelected as governor, to bide his time and then pounce.

    Watching Ken Burns’s PBS Holocaust…such similarities..eerily so.

    I do feel the only way out of this is attrition through death of the old farts, of which I am one. So many here and almost all right wing Fox droolers and QAnon idiots.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. But you’re one of the good old farts, Mary! We need to keep you around!
      That said, I think what you say is 100% true. Until these old folks head to pasture, nothing will change. Am I right to assume that DeSantis is most likely going to win-and fairly easily? I like Christ and think he’d be so much better. But you know Florida. What do you think?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Good post, partner. I share your anger & angst and while I won’t stop trying, won’t stop fighting, I have come to believe that there are those high up the food chain who do not want the people of this nation to heal from the internal injuries of the past 6 years, but prefer the chaos to continue, the great divide to become even greater. And they have found it easy to convince the masses that it would be to their advantage to fight for an all-white, straight, male-dominated society. It isn’t hard to convince people who have no long view, who don’t know history, and who are single-mindedly self-focused.

    If we are to be united again, I firmly believe it will not be a matter of “by whom” but rather “by what”. If you think about that one, it will keep you awake nights, but I believe firmly that it’s going to take a disaster to pull the people of this nation together, and even then I’m not sure it’s possible. Look back at 9/11 … that should have united us, but after the first few days, it divided us even more.

    Glad to see you back in the saddle! I was getting worried!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Jill, for the reblog! As usual, that’s awesome of you. Yes, I’ve owed you an email for a long time and plan on doing that as soon as I can. I’ve definitely been away a bit longer than I would have liked. But, you’ll see me here and there the rest of the year. That’s my hope, at least.
      You may absolutely be correct on some sort of unifying disaster. Nothing would surprise me at this point. But with an ex-president still out there spouting garbage and lies, it’s gonna be real hard to come out of this morass. He MUST be prosecuted and jailed. Period. I’m willing to live with the crazies kicking and screaming about it. The hell with them!! If they want violence, so be it. Let the Justice Dept and law enforcement deal with them. Throw their asses in jail and throw away the key as far as I’m concerned. I’m so tired of HIM, and THEM!! Thanks again partner! We’ll talk. Promise!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. No worries, my friend. I know you’ve been busy, and I barely keep up with blogging ‘stuff’ myself these days. I really would like us to put our heads and efforts together sometime before November 8th, though, and corroborate on another project, or even a single post. So, put your thinking cap on, and I’ll dig mine out from the bottom of the closet and we’ll come up with something!

        I hope I’m wrong about the unifying disaster, but … I just don’t see any signs that the people of this country even wish to try to meet halfway and find common ground, cooperate, or compromise in order to protect democracy. It truly does seem as if the Republican Party has given up on democracy and is ready to take a lot of steps backward into an authoritarian government. That would be one based on and ruled by white straight males, of course. No place for women, Blacks, or LGBTQ people in their views. Sigh.

        Yep … we’ll talk soon! Meanwhile, take care, my friend.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Thank you Jill. Yes, I will put the ol’ thinking cap on and see if anything emerges. Yes, Biden called them ‘semi’ fascists. I’ll help him out and drop the ‘semi’ altogether!

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Reblogged this on Filosofa's Word and commented:
    “Divide et impera” … Julius Caesar, circa a long time ago. In English, it is “Divide and conquer”. Control. A disunited people are far less likely to rise up and oppose a dictator or other authoritarian. Keep them hatin’. Our friend Jeff is angry and so am I …

    Liked by 1 person

  4. As I’ve commented on several WordPress blogs and said in-person to whomever here in central Texas brings up our ‘ southern border and immigrant problem’…

    “Then we might as well tear down Lady Liberty in NY Harbor because NOTHING she stands-for or symbolizes is even remotely accurate of today’s United States!”

    And dear Mary Plumbago, above/below(?), beat me to the punch-bowl regarding PBS’s Ken Burns series airing now, “ The U.S. and the Holocaust,” that even as Americans were finding out the very true horrors happening in Nazi-occupied Poland by advancing Red Army forces, then Allied forces in southern Germany, and reporting it back, up the chain of command, then finally the Western Press was notified… many/most Americans even then did not want Jewish refugees entering our borders! 😧 Appalling then, appalling now! There’s no difference. Period. With today’s extreme polarizing, vitriol politics from the Right and Far-Right, I am currently ashamed to admit to foreigners that I am an American. Never in my 60-yr life did I ever think that I’d feel that way. Never!

    Thanks for mentioning the Ken Burn’s series Mary. I thought of the same thing as I was reading Brookingslib’s post too. It is an outstanding series, as almost ALL of Ken Burn’s productions are.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks for the comments Professor. I couldn’t agree more with your assessments. I do plan on watching the Burns doc at some point. What we need now, and have needed for nearly 4 decades, is a comprehensive immigration policy. The one we have now is a disgrace. But, the GOP will never be on board with it. They want the issue to bash dems over the head repeatedly-lying and scapegoating as many folks as they can. It’s appalling. There was a comprehensive bill in 2013 that actually had some GOP support. Unfortunately it never even came up for a vote in the House. We need an updated version of that bill to pass both houses and signed by potus. I’m not holding my breath.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Jeff/Greg, I thought I had just submitted my comment-reply here, but for some reason do not see it at all. Puzzled. I will attempt again. Please forgive me if my original comment-reply shows up later… for now I am double replying without meaning to do so. Hah!

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      2. Yes, it disappeared into spam. you can now see it just below. Excellent points, and thank you for the positive comments. Mr. Adams is most certainly turning over in his grave, as are the rest of the Founders. They knew how possible it was for a megalomaniac/narcissist/con man to take power. And it worried the hell out of them. Picking up the pieces the disgraced former president left in his wake is going to take years to clean up. Sigh

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Second attempt —

        Agreed on all your points Jeff/Greg. And not only does that 2013 Bill need revisions, but in all honesty we need a seriously updated 21st-century Constitution that even our six (6) Core Founding Fathers KNEW full well it would likely be needed, so they designed into our Charters of Freedom and Constitution to do just that. Granted they made 2-of-the-3 methods super difficult, BUT… not so much the method of a People’s Constitutional Convention. However, this last method does have its challenges, but it is NOT impossible IF the majority of moderate, rational, intelligent, diplomatic Americans want it to happen—thus bypassing the Senate. And after all, the radical Far-Right and stubborn Right are indeed a small minority in this country, yet ruling far too many Moderate (asleep at the wheel?) Americans.

        Anyway, I digress. Sorry.

        Jeff/Greg, outstanding post. Let’s all do whatever it takes in Nov. and again in 2024 to STOP this country’s disturbing direction it has moved in the last 3-4 decades. Those six Core Founding Fathers would also be heartbroke and deeply disturbed if they were alive today to see what has happened to their precious Republic!

        “Oh posterity, you will never know how much it cost us to preserve your freedom. I hope that you will make a good use of it, for if you do not, I shall repent in Heaven that I ever took half the pains to preserve it.”
        John Adams, Letter to wife Abigail Adams, 26 April 1777

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  5. why was it wrong for the governor to send illegal immegrants to Martha’s vinyard? I thought the democrats welcome illegals with open arms, oh wait, that’s only if it’s in border states and not in their rich neighborhoods. I really don’t expect an answer from you or anyone else as i have been summarily banned by both you and jill from your blogs simply because you don’t like what I have to say or the way I say it.

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    1. They were not illegals and they were welcomed with open arms, although no one who knew thought to tell anyone they were coming. You ought to get your accusations correct before you start slinging mud all over the place Scott!
      You are so easy to see right through. Bullshit on top of bullshit on top of bullshit!

      Liked by 4 people

      1. What did you want them to do with these folks Scott? Unless they’re able to move in with the ‘liberal elites’ it doesn’t satisfy your sick and twisted view? Is that what the far right wants? How about getting on board with a comprehensive immigration plan to deal with this stuff? Or, would you rather them gather up 12 million undocumented folks and ship them back to their home countries? It seems to me that that is indeed what the radical right wants.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. what do you really know about my position on immegration? You assume, because I asked an honest question aobut someone you don’t like, that, I must somehow be a part of the cult of people who are taken in by every ploy of people like trump. You assume that I have sick and twisted views but provide no evidence to back it up because you really know nothing about my thoughts on the matter. You don’t have the patience ot ask, don’t really want to open a dialog, aren’t really interested in answering the questions. You’re a typical leftist and I grow tired of such people as yourself.

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      3. THIS is a “simple question” — why was it wrong for the governor to send illegal immegrants to Martha’s vinyard?

        The commentary that follows obviously changes the tone of the question. And you know it.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. You still didn’t answer the question. What do you want to do with the millions of undocumented folks in this country? I’ll not prejudge your answer

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      5. Well, if they were, it certainly was not announced in Canadian news. All we were told wasthat they were moved to the mainland where there were placexfor them to stay. No one mentioned any National Guard. But I would suppose someth8ng like the National Guard might be called in to deal with an unprecedented situation. But that does not mean they were there to act as policemen. You use the word “remove” as if force was involved. The video I saw showed no force being used. They were helping the “strangersin a sfrange land” to move to where more services were available.

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      6. Jerry, if I am so easy to see through, please demonstrate how without using profanity, if you can and explain why it angers you people that the governor sent the illegals to another part of the country when the president has been flying such people to other parts of America for months? oh, and again, try to be polite about it, my question wasn’t asked with any ill will or need to be condescending but with the intention of simply trying to understand your position. but it seems that you people really don’t like me asking questions, even when I do it with what I feel is the best of intentions without being ugly about anything. I get told that I’m embarrassing myself and all sorts of other pejoratives. It’s sad and it shows who the lower people are in this world and it’s no wonder that I’ve almost given up entirely on any sort of political discourse with anyone.

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      7. Again, THEY WERE NOT ILLEGALS! They were Asylum seekers whose cases were all registered with whoever deals with asylum cases. They had been allowed to cross the border legally. What was illegal was DeSantis lying to them, promising shelter and jobs where they were going. And by omission failing to tell anyone they were being sent “by Florida from Texas to whatever state Martha’s Vineyard is in.”
        Then, as Nan already said to you, “”Who are you people?” I have nothing to do with America. I am a Canadian observing an action by a supposed governor of an American state trying to embarass the governor of a state with differrent political persuations. I am one person, looking as an inhumanity being done to my fellow humans.
        You are easy to see through because you are using key words to discuss a situation to make it look like something it is not. The key words you used were not your own, but the words of Republican talking heads who want the situation to look a certain way when anyone who wants can see that the real situation looks entirely opposite to that described by the talking heads you are parroting.
        No cuss words. Scott, just facts. Very visible facts. As you will see when DeSantis is charged with human trafficking. Maybe he thought he was playing a practical joke, but when people’s lives are thoroughly disrupted by a bully, it can not be considered a joke, but a CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY!

        Liked by 2 people

    2. I’ve never banned you Scott. You’re free to comment here, as long as you keep it civil and do not insult or threaten anyone. That said, your statement is ridiculous. It’s nothing but a political stunt and you know it. Well, you know it but refuse to acknowledge it. What do you have against these folks? They have a right to claim asylum from dictator-type regimes. Isn’t that what America is supposed to be about? DeSantis is nothing but a Trump wannabe-two bit thug of a man. He wants to be president and you’re just the type of guy he’s trying to impress with this stunt. Shameful.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. so you want me to keep the discourse civil but you’re calling me shameful and rediculous? looking at it objectively, this is uncalled for and makes you appear hypocritical when all I did was ask a simple question. Sadly, that is what political discourse has turned into and I for one cannot, in good conscience, allow myself to further participate in such mental antics with people like you who refuse to politely engage with people unless they happen to agree with you or they say things you like.

        .

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      2. Scott, I’m calling your views shameful and ridiculous. Would it be better if I said wrong and misguided? Perhaps I should have worded it more gently. I’m not calling you names, by the way, which you’ve done on occasion, as well as threaten folks. We can have an honest debate-absent name calling and the like. And, you saying “you people” isn’t exactly good for the discourse is it?

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Jeff, many thanks. This is just poor form in my view to use people as pawns to win some delusional zero-sum game, regardless of party. What has always frustrated me, is politicians who really don’t want to solve a problem because leaving it unsolved is a better election strategy. The problem is we suffer.

    In 2013, a bipartisan Gang of Eight Senators, including Marco Rubio from Florida, helped pass a pretty good immigration reform bill in the Senate. Yet, the Speaker of the House, Republican John Boehner, was told not to bring this up for a vote in the House even though it would have passed with Democrats and enough Republicans. The feeling by Republicans is it would be better to leave this issue unresolved. This stalling over two years led Obama to make an executive order on DACA, which is not the same as law.

    Ironically, Marco Rubio ran from his biggest legislative successes and condemned the bill he helped pass in the 2016 presidential election. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot. It should also be noted that in 2018, Senators Lindsey Graham and Dick Durbin came to agreement with Trump on $25 billion for Trump’s wall (his number one campaign issue) for making DACA into law. They agreed in the morning, but hardliners like Senator Tom Cotton got in Trump’s ear and by the afternoon, Trump reneged on the deal. They felt it would be better to leave the problem unresolved for election purposes. Again, this was Trump’s number one campaign issue.

    I recognize Democrats play games as well, but these related examples note that on at least two occasions, a problem that was heightened by campaigners was left unresolved to win an election. And, those who left it unresolved were Republicans of the same ilk as then Congressman Ron DeSantis and his fellow governors who are shipping migrants to others’ door steps.

    Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Keith and great to hear from you. I’m glad you mentioned the 2013 bill. If you remember, I think Senator Bob Corker from TN even was able to tack on nearly $45 billion in border security to satisfy some R’s who didn’t think there was enough in the original bill. It still didn’t get a sniff in the House. That’s too bad because it was definitely on the right track. Not a perfect bill but a damn good one. It’s really sad that things have gotten so toxic we can’t deal with this issue. It’s the only way we can begin to tackle immigration though. No piece meal stuff. Comprehensive. Period.

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  7. This is not my comment, but says it far better than I could. From a blog I follow, as to why people support trump.

    “Trump is just another incarnation of King David, or even of Jesus Christ— yes, this is a real thing— because God picks imperfect people to do what he wants them to…
    …And there is a clear, subtextual implication that this immoral, rude, nasty, ignorant bastard is what they want to be. He has given them permission to be just like he is: narcissistic, immoral bullies, simply unconcerned about other people. Trump made it okay to be ignorant , a racist, a religious bigot, and sexist. He made it possible for them not to have to hide who they really are, way down there in those id-iotic depths beneath that thin veneer of civilization. He let them wave the Nazi flag and said they were fine people, or the Confederate flag, that banner of racism, slavery, and treason, and called them patriots. For the Klan, the Confederazis, the Proud Boys, the Incels, and the raggedy-ass militia men just spoiling for a little Francoist limpieza social of their own, Trump was their Jesus— it really is a thing you can google— a white Republican Jesus, who didn’t tell them to be better, but instead gave them permission to be who they already were. “

    Liked by 4 people

  8. For a shrewd operator with some decency (yes they can go together), these spiteful antics of DeSantis could be a gift.
    Why?
    OK
    “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.”
    That is the quote is it not? And these people are being cast out by wretched reactionary administration.
    Sounds like the same situation of America in the 19th century, with people fleeing Europe’s poverty and repression
    And also Idi Amin of Uganda did the self-same thing with the Ugandan Asian population.
    So De Santis sets himself alongside some fine examples, picking on innocents. I would reckon those Red states receiving these folk have a golden opportunity to make the DeSantis way of dealing with things look pretty tawdry and discredit him from here to the end of the decade.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good to hear from you Roger. It does seem eerily familiar to the 19th century. We make a little progress, only to be followed by regression. You’d think we’d move forward and keep moving forward. Obviously there is something deep inside some folks who have a natural propensity to just not like folks different from themselves. It’s quite disturbing and I do not feel that aspect will ever change. Humans, Roger. We’re quite the lot aren’t we?

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Sadly we are Jeff.
        I witnessed a lot of accusations thrown at the USA like you guys had invented atrocities and always the same thought ‘Have you folk checked your own history?’ (Be it nations, community or movement)
        There are lots of folk trying to make the place better but the hate-mongers, frightened and ignorant still shout louder.
        It’s my opinion that we’ve evolved our physical progress ahead of our emotional and spiritual sides. Thus if we do not evolve those up to speed, we’ll be another evolutionary dead-end. Not even been around long enough to make a half-decent fossil record, just some inexplicable (to later beings) geological stratas.

        Liked by 4 people

      2. There’s an old saying Roger, something about the squeaking wheel getting all the attention. Same holds true for the perpetually angry and malcontent public. If only we could put in our ear plugs to drown out their drivel.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. it seems that you guys are the ones who are angry all the time. you have the house, the senate and even the presidency and yet you’re not happy with even that. Just an observation, nothing more. No need to reply, you’ll just call me rediculous and twisted anyway. I’ve learned to expect nothing more at this point.

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      4. to add to my assertion, you’ve said that Biden is doing a good job, that things are getting done and yet you all are still angry.

        Does it have to be all or nothing with you people? Either everyone votes on everything the way you want or those who don’t are treacherous bastards who must be immediately demonized and ideally, removed from congress?

        It sounds like you are the ones who are the authoritarians who want no disagreement, no descent, no opposition, the very same thing you accuse the republicans of. It’s called projection and you do it very well.

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      5. My side isn’t the one who tried to overthrow a legitimate election on January 6, 2021. And many, still today, say the election was stolen. Scott, these are facts. Hopefully you choose to accept them as such. We cannot have one political party dealing with these outlandish and dangerous conspiracy theories. The man who fomented the whole thing, the former 45th president, must be held accountable for this crime against the people of the USA. He is a traitor, as are many of his cohorts. To not charge him/prosecute, is a travesty of justice and is a direct threat to our system of government/democracy. Surely you agree, right?

        Liked by 1 person

      6. how does this even answer what I have asked? it doesn’t.

        I won’t say that the election was stolen as some have but it does look like there were some irregularities and the fact that some election officials wouldn’t allow people to watch their recounts, in my mind, is suspicious. If everything was as honest as you believe, why not allow people to watch the vote counts, etc?

        Like

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