The former reality TV performer who is now president of the United States needs to face reality: his show has been canceled by the American people after four chaotic seasons.
Every election has one winner and one or more losers, and the Electoral College made it official Monday: former Vice President Joe Biden is the winner of the Nov. 3 presidential election and President Trump is the loser.
Biden is now indisputably president-elect and will become president at noon Jan. 20. He received 306 electoral votes, far more than the 270 needed to become our next president. Trump received only 232 electoral votes.
On top of that, Biden won the popular vote in a landslide, capturing almost 81.3 million votes (more than any presidential candidate in U.S. history) to 74.2 million for Trump.
And no, Biden’s victory was not the result of fraud, as Trump falsely claims.
Christopher Krebs, the Republican appointed by Trump to head the federal agency overseeing election security, issued a statement Nov. 12 with state and local election officials calling the election “the most secure in American history.” Trump fired Krebs Nov. 17 for telling the truth.
Even Attorney General William Barr said Dec. 1 that the Justice Department hasn’t found voting fraud “on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election.” Trump tweeted Monday night that Barr will leave his post as attorney general Dec. 23.
And Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., acknowledge the obvious Tuesday when he said on the Senate floor: “The Electoral College has spoken, so today I want to congratulate President-elect Joe Biden.”
Look, we all know that no one likes to lose. But no matter how upset Trump is, no matter how much nonsense he tweets, no matter how many people he fires, and no matter how many frivolous lawsuits he files, he is headed out the door. His defeat will bring a welcome end to a disastrous presidency that waged war on the Constitution, our right to vote, freedom of the press, many other fundamental American rights, and the truth itself.
The results of the Electoral College vote shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. Joe Biden represents the best of America, has advanced moderate and effective policies, and has decades of government experience. He is a uniter, not a divider like Trump. He bases decisions on facts, and will take the job of being president seriously.
Biden rose from modest means, got knocked down again and again in personal tragedies and in failed presidential campaigns, but kept getting up and moving forward. He takes responsibility for past mistakes and doesn’t lash out at opponents with hatred and lies. Quite a change from Trump.
Beyond his overwhelming vote tally, Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris of California — who will become the first woman, first Black person and first person of South Asian ancestry to serve as vice president on Jan. 20 —- created a winning coalition underpinned by Black women.
This successful partnership has broad support among people of color, White college-educated women and men, and working families.
The Biden-Harris ticket drew strong support from voters who rejected the lies, misinformation, and mismanagement of President Trump. They voted for Biden — despite his imperfections — because he acknowledged their pain and represented a potential return to normalcy.
For more than six weeks, the American people have witnessed a desperate president try to hold onto power by any means necessary. Sadly, far too many elected officials in the Republican Party have decided to join him on this dead-end train. These leaders, the president, and his supporters have been relentless in their attempts to disparage our voting system, along with our democracy and the brave Americans who work every day to protect it.
Now what should surprise and encourage us is the growing number of former Trump allies and Republican leaders willing to finally stand up for their party, the country and the facts. These leaders, including McConnell, have decided to accept the results of this election because they know that we must be humbled by the power of the American voter and respect the peaceful transfer of power — no matter what our party. These leaders have a keen sense of what it means to be an American.
For more than six weeks, the American people have witnessed a desperate president try to hold onto power by any means necessary.
Regrettably for Trump, his presidency and legacy will include his unwillingness to acknowledge the will and power of the American people. His unprecedented refusal to accept his election loss is a disservice to himself, his family, his party, his supporters, and our country.
Trump is the nightmare our Founding Fathers feared. Thankfully, they approved a Constitution with firm protections for our democracy that have prevented anyone from seizing power in defiance of voters.
Trump’s willingness to cast doubt on our election system and call it fraudulent simply because he lost the election has resulted in millions of Americans losing faith in our democracy and its ability to bring us together. This disgraceful behavior will go down in history as a permanent stain on Trump’s record in office.
As sad as Trump’s behavior is, we as a nation must turn the page and start to move forward to write a new chapter of American history. The vote by the Electoral College takes us one step closer.
Let’s face it, this new chapter has great challenges. Not only are we struggling with the worst of COVID-19, which is now killing more than 3,000 Americans a day. We are also dealing with all that is left in the wake of this horrific pandemic: a broken economy, a divided nation and rampant racial animus.
Trump will get praise for early investment in a coronavirus vaccine development and a distribution plan labeled “Operation Warp Speed.” To his credit, Americans began getting vaccinated Monday.
But Trump admitted downplaying the severity of the coronavirus pandemic that has so far killed over 300,000 Americans. And he has held numerous campaign and White House events that ignored social distancing and mask guidelines issued by his own administration, and seldom wore a mask himself — even after recovering from his own hospitalization with COVID-19.
The incoming Biden administration will have the task of distributing coronavirus vaccines to every American who wants to be inoculated, and will have to convince the vast majority of us that the vaccines are safe the effective.
And the Biden-Harris team will also have to untangle the web of misinformation, denialism and bad policy that has caused record-setting daily COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations and deaths.
In addition, during his presidency Biden will be tasked with rebuilding the economy — a major coronavirus victim. The pandemic has preyed particularly hard on the economically vulnerable, who work in jobs that can’t be done sitting at home in front of a computer. People who work in restaurants, supermarkets, food-processing plants, factories and retail stores have borne a disproportionate share of infections and job losses due to the pandemic. And people of color are disproportionately represented among these groups.
With more small businesses shutting their doors and evictions at an all-time high, COVID-19 has knocked millions of Americans off their feet. It will be left to Biden and the new Congress to help them and, in doing so, uplift our economy.
To some, Biden will be seen as an illegitimate president. Those individuals, usually the loudest voices in the room, represent the minority in this country. President-elect Biden has committed to building a government that looks and feels like America. If he holds to that, he has an opportunity to make this country better.
Through good governance, Biden can work with local public health agencies to eradicate the deadly coronavirus and rebuild our economy. Through good management, he can restore faith in democracy. Most importantly, the partisan bickering can end, and Americans can begin the hard work of overcoming the divisions that misguided leaders have used to polarize us.
No one can force President Trump to ever accept defeat and admit that Biden won fair and square, even though every other losing presidential candidate in American history has conceded and called on supporters to back the newly elected president. But Trump should swallow his pride and do so, if he wants to live up to his own slogan: America First.
Richard Fowler currently serves as a contributor to FOX News (FNC), joining in September 2016. In his role, Fowler provides political and cultural analysis across FNC’s daytime and primetime programming as well as the network’s Sunday media analysis program Media Buzz with Howard Kurtz