Moses Jolayemi writes that the refusal of President Donald Trump of America to concede defeat to President-elect Joe Biden may influence Nigerian politicians to act in the same manner in the future
As 538 electors meet at various times in their respective state capitols to choose the next president of the United States, out of which 306 electors will give the President-elect, Joe Biden and Vice-President elect, Kamala Harris a resounding victory, it is clear, from all available evidence that Donald J. Trump may go down as the worst episode in contemporary American political history.
That name may also help the compilers of the dictionary add a new synonym to the word irresponsibility and executive rascality.
I wouldn’t have bothered my head so much about the unusual folly currently being displayed by Trump but for the simple reason that the new madness has a way of permeating and strengthening the bones of our own leaders, most of who have left no one in doubt that they have long signed a pact with the devil. I will look away as much as I can from dwelling on our own leaders in order to stay focused on the subject. Reason is that the case of Nigerian leaders is almost beyond repair.
Trump has defied all known logic and reason. He stands today for everything un-American and has practically rewritten that country’s history in such a very bad way that it has the capacity to affect how our made-in-hell politicians will go henceforth since America, over the years has been the mirror from which democracies in other parts of the world are viewed.
This is the first American President that will tarnish the country’s democratic process by refusing to concede defeat even when his opponent scored the highest popular vote in the history of that country.
As I write, Biden has a comfortable win of 81,272,003 over Trump’s 74,209,273; a difference of over seven million votes with a yawning lead of 306 to 232 in the Electoral College vote.
More votes were cast in this year’s presidential election than in any other American election in history and the turnout was the highest in over 100 years with the president-elect, Biden, earning over 80million votes and more than seven million votes over Trump- again the highest ever in history.
But in a shameful attempt to stall the democratic process and the democracy which America has guarded so jealously for over 200 years, Trump and his band of blustering co-travellers of reprehensible record have instituted not less than 46 cases, alleging widespread fraud. So far, none is known to have been upheld, as he has failed to substantiate any of his wild allegations. Most of the cases have been denied, dismissed or withdrawn. One of the judges ruled saying “calling an election unfair does not make it so” and no court has found even one single instance of fraud.
Several states have gone ahead to certify their election results, meanwhile, including Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia, Michigan and Nevada, frustrating Trump’s baleful attempt to overturn the results by mounting legal challenges which have failed to show any traction.
Even when nothing points in positive direction for Mr. Trump, he has continued to press on. The bulk of Republican leaders, including former two-term Republican President, George W. Bush have recognised and congratulated Biden as President-elect and Senator Kamala Harris as Vice-President elect and called on Trump to concede.
A group of leading Republican national security experts — including former homeland security secretary, Tom Ridge, have asked congressional Republicans to demand President Trump concede the election and immediately begin the transition to the incoming Biden administration, according to a report by Washington Post.
“President Trump’s refusal to permit the presidential transition poses significant risk to our national security, at a time when the U.S. confronts a global pandemic and faces serious threats from global adversaries, terrorist groups, and other forces,” according to a statement signed by over 100 Republican leaders.
The signatories included Ridge, the former Pennsylvania governor who served as homeland security secretary under President George W. Bush, former CIA director, Michael Hayden and John D. Negroponte, who served as director of national intelligence, the report further said.
The message called on “Republican leaders — especially those in Congress — to publicly demand that President Trump cease his anti-democratic assault on the integrity of the presidential election.”
A number of perceptive Republican Senators, governors, house of Reps members have also called on Trump to accept defeat and allow the will of Americans, as expressed on November 3 to prevail.
Senator Mitt Romney, a former 2012 presidential candidate from Utah who has served since January 2019 and previously served as the Governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007 wrote on behalf of himself his wife, Ann.
“We know both of them as people of good will and admirable character,” Romney wrote. “We pray that God may bless them in the days and years ahead.”
Romney also told NBC News reporters as far back as November 10 that Biden should be given the tools to begin a transition.
“It’s very much in our national interest, in our foreign policy interest, national security interest, to make sure that if there’s a new team that may become the leadership team, that they be given all access as quickly as possible.”
Susan Margaret Collins, serving senior Senator for Maine since 1997, released a statement congratulating Biden and Harris on their “apparent victory,” but also acknowledging Trump’s efforts to question the election results. While urging patience during the vote count, Collins, unlike Trump, reaffirmed confidence in the system saying “The process has not failed our country in more than 200 years, and it is not going to fail our country this year.”
John Cornyn of Texas, when asked if Biden would be the next president, replied “I haven’t seen anything that would change the outcome.”
Lisa Murkowski of Alaska in her congratulatory statement has even pledged to work with the Biden administration. “While we may not always agree, I will work with them to do what is right for Alaska — just as I will continue to emphasize collaboration and bipartisanship with my colleagues in a narrowly divided Senate,” she wrote.
Jim Risch of Idaho also acknowledged Biden as president-elect, in an interview, saying “This is my second transition where we move from one political party to another in the White House,” adding that the transition “is a change in the music playing in the background.”
There is no doubt that Trump would by all means, vacate the White House, come January 20,2021 and I think he knows. But why he has elected not to tow the line of honour seems to me mysterious.
A number of members of the House of Representatives have expressed support for Biden and Harris. Fred Upton of Michigan raised his hand to work with the president-elect and both sides of the aisle in Congress, saying, “We have to find a way to come together, bridge divisions and focus on solutions that help the millions who are struggling.” Upton quoted Fredrick Douglass in his statement, writing, “I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong.”
Francis Rooney of Florida congratulated Biden on a “successful campaign” and called for all Americans “to come together to support” him. Rooney urged bipartisanship, saying “our nation will only be successful if the new admin is.”
Will Hurd of Texas, Tom Reed of New York , Paul Mitchell of Michigan, Denver Riggleman of Virginia John Shimkus of Illinois Don Bacon of Nebraska, John Curtis of Utah, Don Young of Alaska, Dusty Johnson of South Dakota and Adam Kinzinger of illinois among others have signed in support of the Biden presidency.
Governors too are not left out. Charlie Baker of Massachusetts congratulated the president-elect and vice president-elect on their victory after a “long and divisive campaign.” “It is critical for us all to focus on the very real and immediate challenges facing this nation.”
Phil Scott of Vermont congratulated the next president and vice president on their historic moment, saying it is his “greatest hope that they will be successful in uniting our country and leading us forward through these difficult times.” “The voters have spoken,” Scott said.
“It is now up to all of us to rise above the anger and divisiveness and to turn our focus to common humanity and love of family, freedom and country. This is what real leadership would call on us to do — win or lose.”