So, we're almost two weeks after Election Day, and our current and soon-to-be-ex-President is still trying to stop our federal courts to stop states from certifying their election results over horseshit voter fraud claims and horseshit claims of electioneering impropriety. Pardon my French, but I've no patience for his drama, nor that of his Republican enablers. Sen. McConnell told us the day after Election Day 2016 to "accept the results," but this time he sure was quick to assert our soon-to-be-ex-President's right to file all the frivolous lawsuits he wants after losing by five and a half million votes. And while we'd all love to think he can't just sue his way to victory here -- after all, he's sued plenty of small businesses he's stiffed into just throwing up their hands, but suing Wisconsin into flipping 20,000-plus votes, for example, is a rather bigger lift -- winning lawsuits and flipping votes may not be his goal: his goal, as many keen observers have said, may well be to stall the states from certifying their vote totals so that state legislators will have to take over and select the electors he wants. Everyone's on a deadline, after all, particularly the December 14 deadline when the Electoral College meets. And you know what'll help persuade those legislators to buck the obvious will of the American people? All these rallies where right-wingers demand that our President be re-elected because it's what they want, the rest of us be damned. With rage-filled right-wingers, of course, there'll likely be violence sooner or later, and violence tends to influence legislators far more than we should ever allow.
So here's where things stand now: as the link above reminds us, Republicans control the state legislatures of Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, five states Mr. Biden won this election -- and a lot of these politicians were, like our President, telling a bunch of stories about people they know who heard things about dead people voting and the like. Things may be changing: a few days ago, state legislative leaders from four of these states (all save Georgia) said they wouldn't "intervene" in elector selection, although at least one (Arizona House Speaker Rusty Bowers) has left open the possibility that "some type of fraud -- which I haven't heard of" could change their minds. Suffice it to say that a "box from Alice" full of votes for our soon-to-be-ex-President won't turn up in Arizona -- but the right-wing fever dreams of machines switching millions of votes will continue, and as we approach the Electoral College deadline, the likelihood of Confederate flag-waving caravans of pickup trucks rolling through peaceful neighborhoods and demanding action-or-else will grow.
So our task today is to remind the leaders of these state legislatures of the promises they've made, promises we expect them to keep even when violence hits us. After all, they're getting a lot of phone calls from right-wing crybabies, so we've got to make sure we're heard, too. Here are their phone numbers:
Arizona House Speaker Russell "Rusty" Bowers: 602.926.3128.
Arizona Senate Majority Leader Rick Gray: 602.926.5413.
Georgia House Speaker David Ralston: 404.656.5020.
Georgia Senate Majority Leader Mike Dugan: 404.463.2478.
Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield: 517.373.2629.
Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey: 517.373.5932.
Pennsylvania House Speaker Bryan Cutler: 717.783.6424.
Pennsylvania Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman: 717.787.1377.
Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos: 608.266.9171.
Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald: 608.266.5660.
Your message can go something like this: "I call today to urge you to do your part to ensure that our Electoral College expresses the will of the people in this election, as your own state laws require. I am encouraged to hear less loose talk of so-called fraud and so-called impropriety during this election, but I am also aware that many right-wingers fantasize about doing violence, and may in fact do violence, in support of their preferred candidate, and when that time comes, I urge you to remember to do the job your laws command you to do, regardless of what pressure partisans may exert from the outside."
There is one other thing we must consider when talking to these folks: they all saw what we saw -- our soon-to-be-ex-President outperformed the polling, and did seem to drag a lot of House and Senate candidates upward to victory, against the pundits' expectations. At least in the short term, Republicans may come to different conclusions about that data -- some will say it "proves" that our current President "deserves" re-election regardless of the vote tally saying he doesn't, while others will say it proves that the "movement," such as it is, that our current President has galvanized will endure and requires "respect." I say that people who are wrong about everything and feel nothing but rage deserve no respect regardless of how much they whine in public, but a lot of folks will make different calculations than I will, and we have to prepare ourselves for that, not just today, but every day.
So good luck, and God bless.
UPDATE. Got some full phone mailboxes, so I'm going to add some email addresses here:
Georgia House Speaker David Ralston: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Georgia Senate Majority Leader Mike Dugan: email@example.com.
Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield: LeeChatfield@house.mi.gov.
Michigan Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey: SenMShirkey@senate.michigan.gov.
Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald: Sen.Fitzgerald@legis.wisconsin.gov.
I was able to leave a voicemail with everyone else (very few legislative staffers are answering the phone these days due to COVID). Also, the 888 number for Speaker Vos apparently doesn't work outside of his district, so I removed it.