Sanders: A phone call for 11,780 votes proves to be worse than Nixon

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Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

In an hour-long phone call, President Donald Trump urged Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to override Georgia’s total votes from the recent presidential election. President Trump has previously spoken to the state’s other representatives and local executives about potential voter fraud, demanding a recount.

Henry Sanders, Student Life Editor

On January 2, 2021, President Trump pressured Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to overturn the election results of the state of Georgia based on false claims of voter fraud. The phone call lasted over an hour and revealed Trump urging Raffensperger by saying, “I just want to find 11,780 votes,” and “And there’s nothing wrong with saying, you know, um, that you’ve recalculated.”

The hour long phone call shows pure desperation from a president who only continues to lose, just like the more than 50 lawsuits claiming voter fraud occurred during the 2020 election that have been shot down. To believe in voter fraud is to believe that all the poll workers were fraudulent, the voting machines were fraudulent, Trump’s own lawyer was wrong, election security workers were paid off, the lower courts were paid off, every U.S. court of appeals was paid off, and the state supreme courts were paid off.

I’m not surprised at Trump’s phone call. It’s just another tally mark to a long list of scandalous events over the course of his presidency. The news of Trump’s attempt to conspire is not a major talking point for his supporters. Living in a conservative state means being numb to every excuse a Trump supporter can create that changes the conversation from attempted election fraud by Trump to Biden having a stutter.

From discussions about the president’s rhetoric and Twitter rants to uncomfortable conversations on race in America, conversations with Mississippi conservatives involve a level of patience for Trump that many liberals living as a minority in the South struggle to keep. The constant lying and defending Trump talk is all too common, even for this phone call that is so in-your-face. Friends turn into idiots after a confession of Trump support, but will the mind-numbing, brain-washed Trump supporter finally let go after evidence of an hour-long desperate attempt to stay in power? Of course it won’t.

In all honesty, what’s the point of talking about Trump’s supporters’ feelings towards this groundbreaking evidence of his attempt to tamper with an election? The only appropriate reaction to the phone call, apparently, is one that carries with it a torch of desperation followed by a raid on the Capitol. What a pathetic “revolution.” 

Trump’s supporters have reacted by either staying silent in an attempt to not have to defend an obvious attack on democracy or attacking democracy. Most of his supporters have no regard for this phone call. They have stayed with him this far, and there’s very little to dissuade them–I have tried.

If the first quotes stated by Trump in the phone call weren’t surprising enough, the commander in chief of the United States claimed, “They, they beat me in the – as you know, every single state, we won every state. We won every state house in the country.” The leader of the free world is so delusional that he really believes every single state was in his favor. Citizens must ask themselves if this is an example of severe desperation or mental instability. 

Having been critical of Trump’s administration from the beginning, I wasn’t concerned that the election results would have been altered in Trump’s favor. I, like many others, trust the legal system of the United States and the Law of Large Numbers in statistics considering the over 50 lawsuits thrown in the trash. But for others it’s simply not enough, nor will it ever be. 

While ridiculous claims by Trump are nothing groundbreaking, especially considering the mountain of stupid assertions in his history, asking a state secretary to “find 11,780 votes” is. The importance of these assertions is to realize the greater demographic of America’s citizens. Racism and ignorance are rampant, and Trump has made it mainstream.

This phone call is significant for many reasons, but the most striking element of the hour-long plea is the timing. This is truly an end the end of an era. An end of democracy being tossed aside, of supporters being openly racist, of cowards hiding behind “All Lives Matter” chants to dissociate them from compassion for others outside their own race. How Trump’s presidency ends is not with a bang but with a whimper, followed by a bang loud enough to shatter the Capitol’s windows.

Some might say that Nixon’s scandal is the greatest presidential scandal in American history. On June 17, 1972, Washington D.C. police arrested five burglars that infiltrated the Democratic National Committee’s headquarters in Watergate. Later evidence would surface that these burglars were tasked with spying on and sabotaging the DNC in favor of President Nixon’s reelection campaign. However, after Trump’s futile attempt at his own form of voter fraud, I would beg to differ. While Nixon sabotaged his opponent’s campaign, Trump convinced a significant portion of the U.S. that an election was fraudulent then asked for more votes. Trump has scandalized the nation for four years and now he begs for a longer reign. 

Nixon’s scandal brought his supporters nothing but shame and a feeling that they had been played for fools. Most of Trump’s supporters are not ashamed. In fact, they are more proud than ever to call themselves patriots, true believers to Trump’s every word. 

This phone call is bound up with the Capitol raid in a package. Trump has lost, but only at the cost of turning his radical supporters into active terrorists. His phone call will still ring through America’s history, but his supporters will be active long after this news has faded.