By Jonathon Van Maren
Like many of you, I was up very late last night. Around 11 PM we switched from CNN to The Daily Wire Election Livestream, which was fantastic—cultural analysis, diversity of views (the very liberal Eric Weinstein was on), and consistent coverage. After last night, the media has proven once again how untrustworthy they are on all things conservative. It looks like we won’t know who secured the presidency for days, and maybe longer. In all probability, this will end up in the courts. An unclear result, accusations of cheating—all of this is very bad for America.
But for now, a few observations. First, the most obvious: The pollsters and the media failed miserably. David Brooks of the New York Times summed it up on Twitter: “Our job in the media is to capture reality so that when reality voices itself, like last night, people aren’t surprised. Pretty massive failure. We still are not good at capturing the rightward half of the country.” The truth is that the media hasn’t tried to capture reality for some time. They’re openly rooting for the Left, and campaigned hard against Trump for four years. He gave them a lot to work with, mind you, but there it is.
Last night was supposed to be a bloodbath for the Republicans. It wasn’t. The best news is that it looks like the GOP will hold onto the Senate. After firehosing tens of millions of dollars into races to defeat incumbents like Lindsey Graham, the Democrats failed. And I cannot emphasize just how good this news is: If Biden becomes president and the GOP holds the Senate, the most radical elements of the Democrat agenda will be, at the very least, neutralized for the time being. As Politico put it in an article titled “Biden looks screwed even if he wins”:
The Democrats’ anti-filibuster movement and its interest in expanding the Supreme Court and the Senate, or any other process reforms to maximize a new Democratic president’s power and influence, would be placed on pause. A President Biden’s agenda would be defined by his ability to win over the entire Senate Democratic caucus, from Bernie Sanders to Joe Manchin, and then as many as 10 Republicans. Ultimately, Biden would have to deal with McConnell, who would undoubtedly reprise the role he played in the Obama era when he had no incentive to help Obama rack up legislative achievements.
This means no court-packing and no Equality Act for at least several years, and perhaps longer.
The Democrats did not get the brutal repudiation of the GOP they had been counting on, and after years of claiming that Trump was a white supremacist—Biden even claimed unpersuasively that Trump’s racism was why he ran in the first place—Trump is on course to get the highest share of non-white voters of any Republican presidential candidate since Richard Nixon in 1960, getting double Romney’s count in 2012 and almost triple Bush’s count in 2000. White nationalist Richard Spencer, incidentally, voted the straight Democratic ticket. Progressive Twitter is already attempting to explain to these non-white voters that they are too stupid to realize that Trump is a racist, but that doesn’t appear to be a great outreach strategy. As I pointed out in National Review earlier this week, the alt-right isn’t rising. Those who claimed Trump was destroying the GOP’s ability to reach minorities have some explaining to do. Last night destroyed a lot of narratives.
There’s some great news in the House, too. So far, thirteen pro-life Congresswomen have won (and counting), which would be a big story if they weren’t pro-life women. The Susan B. Anthony List is publishing a running tally of pro-life politicians elected thus far, and there have been some very encouraging victories. The House Democrats, incidentally, are furious. They were told that the Blue Wave was coming and that they would soon be in control of all the levers of power. At this point, at least, that looks very unlikely. Last night could have been a disaster for the GOP. If they keep the Senate as projected, it wasn’t.