History in the Making: Joe and Kamala Are Ready to Lead, but Will Trump F*cking Leave?
On this very special episode of democracy-ish, it’s Danielle’s birthday and all's (almost) right with the world.
Since we last left our intrepid hosts, the majority of votes have been counted and Joe Biden is the President-Elect of the United States of America. Cue the confetti, champagne and socially distanced dancing in the street.
Although Biden and his historic VP Kamala Harris won by a huge margin, Donald Trump refuses to concede –– and his Republican enablers won’t admit the race is over either.
There’s a whole lot to celebrate, but as always, there’s fuckery afoot. And yet, as progressives, we can walk and chew gum at the same time.
Since she learned Trump’s dumpster fire will be extinguished, and its ashes thrown (with both small-d and capital-D) Democratic force into the dustbin of history, “I feel so refreshed now that Satan is banished from the White House,” Danielle says. “Best gift ever.”
Toure thinks it’s funny she says that, considering her legendary pessimism and our current lack of a formal transfer of power between El Cheeto and the Biden-Harris administration.
“No, that motherfucker's leaving,” she says. “He is, even if I have to go pack that bitch myself.”
In the wake of Trump’s historic rebuke and an equally historic win for the President- and Vice-President-Elect, bottles are still poppin’ across our great nation.
But somehow, the race is an ongoing drama –– ”because, unsurprisingly, Donald Trump who showed us in 2016 he was the worst winner imaginable and shows us now he’s the worst loser imaginable,” says Toure.
Although Biden won by at least 5 million more votes, shattering Obama's voter turnout record and flipping several key swing states, Trump has yet to concede. But that’s just a formality. What’s alarming is his refusal to sign the paperwork that gives Biden and his team what they need to show up prepared in January.
There’s a lot to celebrate –– and plenty to worry about too, because 2020. Let’s do this thing.
Episode Highlights –– Fuck Your Feelings
The fraud squad
“We knew Donald Trump wasn’t going to concede because narcissists don't do that,” says Danielle.
But she is somewhat surprised by cable news insistence on continuing to interview Trump’s “deplorable” base.
Toure is troubled by the media’s ongoing coverage of the presidential race as if it’s not over, asking “leading and inappropriate questions” that suggest the possibility that it was somehow “stolen.” But opinions aren’t facts, he says.
“It is certifiably, demonstrably provable: There was no voter fraud.”
The Republicans’ insistence that there was is “part of their multi-pronged effort to steal the election and rob it of integrity,” he adds. “These are the people who cut the number of polling places, fucked with the Postal Service and put up fake ballot boxes.”
“And burned some of them,” Danielle notes.
Plus, Trump has sown doubt in the electoral process for years now. He told us voting by mail couldn’t be trusted. But it all fits with “the modern, and historic, GOP's thesis that a deep sense of grievance will motivate their people and keep the tribe tight,” Toure says.
“This is a group of people still mad about the Civil War, Roe v. Wade, and Judge Bork. This is just the newest battle they can be angry about for years to come.”
When we go high, they go really low
Danielle thinks we pay way too much attention to Republicans' grievances, especially when they lose.
“When we lose, they pretty much put up a middle finger and say go fuck yourself.”
Case in point: Megyn Kelly recently tweeted that Democrats will have to reconcile with the 70 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump.
“Because Trump reconciled with the 68 million people who voted for Hillary Clinton?” she asks. “Get the fuck out of here. We don't have to apologize for winning. You should apologize for siding with a fascist and showing your white-supremacist ass.”
It’s a low moment for the GOP “in a valley of low moments,” Toure says.
They all know Biden won fair and square. It wasn’t a surprise. Meanwhile, most world leaders –– even quasi-dictators like Erdogan from Turkey –– have called Biden to offer congratulations.
Yet people like McConnell, Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham are refusing to do so, in spite of the fact that Biden “isn’t some outsider,” he adds. “He’s part of the DC club. They all know Joe … and they know they’ll have to work with him.”
But they seem to have no problem accepting the results of their own elections.
“Isn't that convenient?” Danielle notes. “It’s all you need to know about these people … It just shows they have no character.”
Dancing with the cult leader
Republican loyalty to anything is “wayward” at best –– and Danielle doesn’t even see any allegiance to the American people.
“They don't even take their own jobs seriously enough to offer up any policies or platforms.”
But she does think it's remarkable that Lindsey Graham, who used to call John McCain his best friend –– “until he found his nose up Donald Trump's ass,” she adds –– is still parroting Trump’s lies.
“I thought Trump's hold on the Republican Party was leashed to him as a winner, as a person holding office,” says Toure. “But in a moment when he has lost … they still remain loyal.”
It reminds him of the “other NXIVM documentary, Starz’ ‘Seduced,’ which is just evil on a plate,” he says. No spoilers, because everybody knows Keith Raniere goes to prison for 120 years. But at the end, there's an iPhone video of his continued supporters dancing outside his prison window.”
Just like Raniere’s sex slaves, Trump supporters “still line up with their soul in one hand, and their integrity in the other, and they throw it in the bag and say, this election isn’t over.”
Biden’s (global) victory party
Danielle recently saw a meme on Instagram that said something like: Live your life in a way that, if you lose your job, the whole fucking world doesn't celebrate.
The American people braved a pandemic to “fire his ass,” she says. “And once the results came in, I awoke to hear screaming, and pots and pans banging. There were spontaneous parties in the streets.”
Danielle made a run to her local wine shop to buy champagne, and it was almost sold out. Employees told her that, as soon as they heard screaming outside, people began to rush in and grab the bubbly.
“Everyone was saying they haven't felt this kind of joy in years.”
Those impromptu celebrations weren’t just in New York, LA, Chicago and Philly. We heard bells ring in Paris and saw fireworks in London.
“The world took a collected sigh on Saturday and continued to party all weekend long,” says Danielle.
‘Still idiots’: Republicans’ losing game
That's why it’s so incredible that Trump’s pretending he still has some kind of silent majority, says Danielle.
“It's like, did you go out in front of the White House and see the thousands of people in Lafayette Square celebrating? The ones you tried to trample on months ago with tear gas and horses?”
And yet the president and his allies have the audacity to start talking about 2024.
“It's gonna be hard for you to run from prison,” Danielle says.
The Republican party, having lost seven out of eight popular votes, should recognize its need to change, says Toure.
“To the Black people who voted for Trump, I say fuck you. But about 90% of Black people, it seems, voted for Joe Biden. And that made the difference … Now, Black people are the demographic that votes with the Democratic Party more solidly than any other. If the Republican party doesn't think it needs to fix that, they're complete idiots.”
They are complete idiots, he notes, so they’ll keep using language like Democratic plantation, he adds. The racist acceptance of the proud boys, David Duke, Dick Spencer and other white supremacists will continue to cost them any chance of winning voters in the urban areas of several critical states.
Black and Brown people saved democracy (Karens did not)
Toure thinks the Republicans are “constraining themselves and consigning themselves to being a second-rate party in a two-party system for a long time, as demographics continue to move with Black and Brown people, especially Brown people, as a growing segment –– and white people as a declining segment –– of America.”
That was readily apparent in the turnout we saw from indigenous Americans, Danielle points out.
“I want everybody to give kudos to the Navajo people. Arizona flipped because of the highest voter turnout ever among Native Americans. Black and Brown people saved our democracy from demise.”
She never wants to hear the phrase white suburban woman ever again.
“Yeah, but you will,” says Toure.
“Let me tell you something,” Danielle continues. “I have no time for the Karens. Those bitches voted 55%, up from 52% in 2016, for Trump. White people, in this particular election, showed they are irrelevant. We do not need to convince them to do the right fucking thing. As long as we have Black and Brown people, we're good.”
The 2016 election catalyzed what Toure calls a “national autopsy on who is the Trump voter.”
There were too many articles and news segments and books and documentaries to count.
But “Black voters were the deciders in this election,” he says. “Will we see years of probes on who is the Black voter and what do they want? No, you will not.”
Keeping up with the (Van) Jones
Danielle has a question for Toure “about somebody; you can choose not to answer it,” she says.
“Is it Van Jones?” he asks.
“It is. It fucking is,” she replies. She was wholly unmoved by his “fucking crocodile tears,” considering his reaction to Trump’s first (dismal) State of the Union address: He just became president in that moment.
Coupled with Jones’ effusive praise of the administration’s Kardashian-enabled efforts toward criminal justice reform, she found the “fuckery his tears” quite hollow.
“I share your deep disappointment in many things Van has said over the last four years, but I was quite moved by that moment,” he says. “The sense that character actually does matter. That America still is alive. That the release of the pain about being targeted and attacked is, like, loosened.”
That’s Madam Vice-President-Elect to you
Danielle would rather talk about Kamala Harris.
Over the course of the race, her fear of “another decade of fascism, that this was going to be our last election if we weren't able to win” meant she couldn’t feel much joy about her historic candidacy.
But now she is Madam Vice President-Elect, and “as a Black woman, a Jamaican-American and a child of immigrants –– my grandmother’s mother immigrated from Calcutta to Jamaica –– I feel so deeply about Kamala and what she means to little Black and Brown girls across the country. I'm excited about what she will do and represent.”
Toure is excited, too: “She's a badass, super-intelligent, lots of energy. I’m certain she's going to be one of the more activist vice presidents, actually involved in doing things rather than those who just go to funerals and wait –– just in case, like a spare. I look forward to her being a powerful part of this administration and running for president in 2028.”
We’re all about … Stacey’s bomb
Does that mean Toure thinks Biden will run again in 2024?
“Did you not see him literally running to the podium?” he asks, referencing Biden’s ascent to the dais on Saturday night.
“I screamed,” says Danielle. “You got it. You're gonna run up those steps and show up Trump with his fat ass.”
There were times in the primary when Biden didn’t seem up to the task, Toure notes. But now he’s got “a vibe ... and he’s “ready to go.”
Moreover, he sees Biden as “a deeply decent, caring person. He’s one of those politicians who seems like he doesn't do it for the ego. He does it because he cares about other people. That is 1,000% what our country needs right now, to smudge away the stench of the last four years.”
Danielle is down with the smudging. And she wants us to remember that there’s still an opportunity to win the Senate, via two runoffs in Georgia.
“My God, Stacey Abrams,” she says. “Her work is not done. Hats off to her … and how fucking extraordinary she is and the work that she’s been doing tirelessly.”
We can still ditch Mitch McConnell, even though Amy McGrath couldn’t win his seat.
“We can take the gavel out of his hand,” says Toure.
“That's enough,” Danielle replies. “I want the gavel out of his hand. I'd like to clobber him with it, but instead of that, I would like it removed.”
@DeeTwoCents’ best birthday ever
There have been times over the last six months when our hosts were worried we were about to lose it all.
But they’re confident: We still have a country.
It started as a joke, but we literally started praying about it.
“America is not perfect,” says Toure. “We’ll be the first to criticize America. But we have been rescued from the brink. Now we can get to somewhere more equitable and empowering for more of us.”
So far in the 21st century, when there’s been a Black person on the ticket, Democrats are 0-3, he adds.
“When there's not a Black person on the ticket, they’re 0-3. I can guarantee you there will be a Black person on the ticket in 2024, and almost certainly 2028. So here we go.”
“Democracy, the best birthday present ever,” says Danielle.
Get your weekly rundown of the presidential election from a Black progressive point of view on democracy-ish. Consider Danielle Moodie and Toure as your tour guides, flight attendants and/or therapists as we move through this dumpster fire of an election cycle — together!