I’m back live on the radio today 9am to noon ET. You can listen live at erickericksonshow.com. Also, news for you: we will begin growing the show outside Georgia this year. If you want it in your local market, start calling your local talk radio station.
Let’s get to the phone call first.
Whether you think it is a big deal or not, understand that Georgia Republicans are apoplectic today. The call itself is not the problem for Republicans (oh, but it is a problem). The problem is that the Republican Secretary of State chose to leak it before the President’s rally in Dalton, Ga.
The Republican early vote finally arrived last week, but it put them a bit behind compared to the general election. They need a big Election Day turnout and they need it from North Georgia. That part of the state has the most GOP vote and it has lagged behind the rest of the state. It is probably not a coincidence that this is also where the loudest “the race was stolen” voices come from. The GOP has suppressed itself up there.
So they are sending the President of the United States to Dalton, GA for a 9pm rally to get out the vote tomorrow. If he is distracted by the phone call, will he actually encourage these people to vote? His legacy depends on it, but some Republicans are convinced he’d rather the GOP lose Georgia. Otherwise, it is hard to claim the Democrats could engage in a transcontinental conspiracy to steal the presidency, but couldn’t use the same voting machines in Georgia to steal the Senate.
The direction of the country hangs on what Trump says at a rally in Dalton, GA tonight.
Raffensperger as Sherman
Not since Sherman marched through Georgia has someone seemingly been committed to burning it all down. Raffensperger has been attacked by the President and by both Republican senators. He probably will get a primary challenge in 2022 now. I’m not sure he will even run again.
He has no incentive to be a team player now. He has no reason to wait on leaking that tape. No one denies he was the source. Perhaps the Republicans who want to hold Georgia should not have made Raffensperger the scapegoat.
Also, the man deserves credit for having a spine of steel. He has not budged and has earned a lot of respect behind doors with people who were earlier critical of him. Of course, should he run again, the media will turn on him because of the letter next to his name. But the man has a lot of steel in his body and as much as he is pissing off the President’s base, he’s shown he takes fair elections seriously.
The other issue here is what the President said. The common interpretation is the anti-Trump interpretation and he said a lot that makes it hard to look at it any other way. It is notable that the pro-Trump response has been to attack Brad Raffensperger for leaking the call, not to defend the content of the call.
Fulton County, Georgia has a brand new female District Attorney. She’s a Democrat who just came through a brutal election and her platform is anti-corruption. The President called into Fulton County, Georgia to, as some claim, commit a crime. She could indict him.
So too could an ambitious new US Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia. Joe Biden will pick a Democrat. If that US Attorney indicted the President, who would stop him? If Loeffler wins, in two years the Democrats nationally would rally to the candidacy of a US Attorney with the testicular fortitude to indict the former President of the United States.
President Trump was not smart in how he handled that phone call.
Ossoff Attacking Loeffler
My producer, Charlie, pointed out Jon Ossoff has spent most of the last two weeks attacking Kelly Loeffler. Ossoff is not running against Loeffler. This is interesting. Does Ossoff think he’s won already? Actually, the odds are Ossoff knows he has lost to Perdue and the Loeffler v. Warnock race is close.
National reporters have convinced themselves that voters in the runoff will vote straight ticket. The problem, however, is the data from the general suggests otherwise. North Metro white voters do not like Ossoff and South Georgia black farmers do not like Ossoff. I’ll tell you who South Georgia black farmers love — David Perdue.
It makes sense that Ossoff would turn all his attacks on Loeffler in the final two weeks if he knows a win is out of reach for him, but a Warnock win is still possible. They chose to run as a team and he’s trying to help get at least part of the team across the finish line.
Chip Roy is a Hero
If the elections in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin were stolen, why would Congress want to sit any members of Congress from those states? If the presidential race were stolen, those would probably be impacted as well.
This is the logic some Republicans in the House don’t want to deal with because it undermines their clown show — the one where they object to the Electoral College knowing they’ll lose, but they’ll be credited with one last good hump of the President’s leg.
Congressman Chip Roy, probably the most conservative Republican in the House of Representatives, forced the House to vote on sitting the new congressmen from those states. He exposed the hypocrisy of his fellow Republicans who want to beclown themselves in a spectacle for the President’s behalf without having to assess the election integrity of their own members.
Some Republicans are attacking Roy. They should be praising the guy. He’s one of the few authentic principled conservatives left in the House. He’s been a reliable vote for the President, but has opposed major spending initiatives and big government nonsense. We need more like him.
The Senate Silliness
Let me be frank. The Senate Republicans who want to object to the Electoral College would not be doing so if they thought it would really work. They know better. So they also know what they are doing now is a dangerous, precedent-setting bit of business that will come back to haunt them later. But they don’t care because they are far more worried about 2024 than they are the consequences of their actions now.
Seriously — it won’t work. All the Democrats will need just a couple of Republicans and they already have more than a dozen Republicans. So Hawley, Cruz, etc. can do this knowing it won’t matter, but they can try to convince Trump voters to support them in 2024.
The irony here is that in 2016, the GOP field was so crowded that the GOP divided itself in multiple ways and allowed Trump to build an unchallenged base. Remember, Trump got the lowest percentage of the primary vote of any GOP nominee in at least fifty years, but the field was too divided to match him and he won.
I can now easily see a scenario where Hawley, Cruz, etc. wind up doing in 2024 what the establishment did in 2016 — splitting the Trump vote so much that an establishment candidate gets the nod. It’ll probably be a Governor who doesn’t have the taint of self-beclownment on them.
It is notable that Tom Cotton has come out against the effort. He is taking a principled stand. The bottom line is that the Hawley-Cruz wing has a legitimate claim — the constitution says legislatures chose the manner of picking the electoral college and judges made changes to those rules without their legislatures. It’s a big claim. The problem, however, is multiple Trump-appointed federal judges have ruled on those issues. The federal court reasoning is that legislatures set the method of choosing electors, which is election by popular vote. No rule change changed that methodology, therefore the rules changes were fine and within the permissible conduct of election administration. You can disagree with that, but the third branch of government and a bunch of Trump-appointed judges disagree with you. Also, the Trump team abandoned all their fraud claims in court. No actual lawsuit from the Trump team actually claimed fraud.
Tomorrow, Georgia will decide whether Joe Biden can impose a gun tax, get rid of the President’s tax cuts, and accomplish a lot of the left’s agenda. Why? Because Joe Biden is going to be President, performance art notwithstanding, and the Senate will either have a Republican majority or a 50-50 Senate with Kamala Harris breaking ties.