One More Day
Thoughts on the Day Before:
1. Vote. Yes, I know, I’m a broken record on this score, but, hey, you know what? I don’t care. If you’re an American citizen and you have not done so already, go and vote. I would prefer you voted for Hillary Clinton, and generally any other Democratic candidates for national office at least, but obviously you should vote for whichever candidates are most congenial to your particular world view (and please think seriously about whether your preferred candidate is, in fact, congenial to your actual world view). Don’t vote just for president; vote down ballot as well. Do the work and take a little time to familiarize yourself with the positions of candidate and various issues. Look, just be a goddamned informed voter, okay? Please? It’s actually not too much to ask for.
2. I wrote my electoral predictions yesterday and in the intervening time the FBI announced that they weren’t going to do anything new regarding Clinton and those damn emails, which basically means the FBI and its director James Comey very publicly shat themselves, and smeared poop all over the election, for no good reason at all. What the little escapade did do, however, is remind people that the email “scandal” is largely bullshit, despite the fervent desires of many; I suspect it probably also enraged a number of Clinton supporters who see this as direct and intentional interference by the FBI on behalf of Trump — the new email scandal lasted just long enough, in fact, for the press to winkle out that at least some of the FBI New York office has it in for Clinton.
As I said on Twitter yesterday, this won’t have any effect on polls — it’s too late for that — but it might have an effect on voting, as in, some folks will be extra motivated to vote Clinton and down the ticket now. It’s one thing for Clinton to have to deal with all the ambient sexism that any woman candidate would have to, plus the three decades of animus she’s accrued. It’s another thing to believe the actual FBI is actively working to sabotage a presidential campaign out of spite. There was chatter that the FBI’s involvement might have cost the Democrats control of the Senate; I would suggest there’s just enough time for some really pissed Clinton supporters to get it back now.
3. On the other side of things, and obviously we’ll have to see if this holds, but at the moment it just kind of feels like the Trump campaign is kind of like a three-day-old birthday balloon left out in the sun, leaking air out of tiny pinpricks. Clinton’s FBI exoneration couldn’t have come at a worse time, a New York Times article about the Trump campaign’s last days is full of bathetic pathos, nearly all the national polls show Clinton with a durable lead, and in the state where there’s early voting, the latinx voters are coming out in force against Trump, building margins for Clinton that are, if not insurmountable, certainly a challenge to get over.
It’s not over — please vote! — but it doesn’t look good for Trump. It’s one thing to have everything come down to the wire, and it’s another things to have it like this, where it’s pretty clear the game is done, it’s just that the timer hasn’t run out yet, and everything is simply in garbage time now.
I don’t think this is a bad thing, mind you. There’s always been a chance that the more racist and horrible of Trump’s supporters would show up at polling places with their little man-props to “monitor” minority votes, and they still might, and of course Trump will stomp and mew about the vote being rigged no matter what happens. But the more it looks like it’s over before the vote is tallied up, the better chance we get through tomorrow without some regrettable incident.
Again, one big sign is how Florida falls. If it goes Clinton, Trump’s pretty much done. If it goes Trump, but North Carolina goes Clinton, he’s also pretty much done. If he gets both, buckle in, this will take a while.
4. But again, take nothing for granted, and remember I can be as full of shit and rationalizations as anyone. Vote.
I know! I keep saying it! Well, you know. I’ll say it some more before we’re done.