Election Bravado Before Defeat at Local Trump Rally
November 13, 2020
“I fight harder and harder and harder and better than anyone’s ever fought for you. We were brought here. We were put here to fight for you. I had a very easy life before this, I have to tell you,” Donald Trump groused at his rally at Traverse City’s Cherry Capital Airport on Nov. 2. The crowd chanted, “Thank you, Trump! Thank you, Trump!” in response.
At his third of five rallies on the final day before the Nov. 3 election began, Trump’s energy was unusually tame. The preening, the stream of consciousness showmanship, and the usual stock phrases the world has come to know these last five years were all in attendance. There was a sizable crowd of ecstatic supporters, but also a wistfulness in Trump’s tone that was nowhere to be found in the other speakers who preceded him, including Congressman Jack Bergman, Senate candidate John James, and Vice President Mike Pence. Until the president spoke, Trumpism descended upon speakers and audience alike, and remained throughout Trump’s speech.
Trump’s speeches are characteristically scattershot, and his speech in Traverse City was no exception. Pulling quotes at random, one heard Trump opine, “Joe Biden is bought and paid for by big tech, big media, and powerful special interests.” Elsewhere he declared, “I have been under siege illegally for three and a half years.” Trump also suggested, “A vote for Biden is a vote to give control of government over to the globalists, and the communists, socialists, and wealthy liberal hypocrites who want to silence, cancel and punish you. Cancel culture they call it, cancel culture. No, thank you.” All this he said just five days before Mr. Trump’s cancellation as President of the United States.
The speech ended on a note of premature triumphalism. “Get out and vote, so important. The red wave, I talk about it. The red wave, I think, is going to be far bigger,” Trump said. “A movement like this has never happened before, it’s never happened, and we have to keep it going and finish it out. From Midland to Mackinaw, from Lansing to Grand Rapids… It’s not easy.”
Photo by Nick Moug
President Donald Trump speaks to the crowd outside Cherry Capital Airport on a chilly election-eve night.
Late evening on Nov. 4, Trump lost Michigan’s 16 electoral ballots by more than 146,000 of the popular vote to Joe Biden. As of press time, Joe Biden has become the President-elect with 290 electoral votes while Trump trails behind at 214.
After the election, Trump tweeted, “Tens of thousands of votes were illegally received after 8 P.M. on Tuesday, Election Day, totally and easily changing the results in Pennsylvania and certain other razor thin states.” Twitter flagged the tweet with a discaimer stating, “Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process,”
New rallies are already being organized both online and at state houses. The presidency of Donald Trump may be ending, but Trumpism has not. Its most zealous followers are demanding ballot recounts and have even begun an online migration to other social media platforms, such as Fox News commentator Dan Bongino’s Parler – currently the #1 app in the Apple app store.
Trumpism fired up the crowd in Traverse City, invigorating the faithful. Now, after a national defeat, its adherents make their exodus away from mainstream politics, but not without a fight. If that fight should end, the search for a new promised land begins.