Three days after statisticians called the 2020 US presidential election for Joe Biden, the loser of that contest continues to sulk in the White House like a spoiled eight-year-old kid and is brooding about the result. Trump’s campaign may still be holding meetings and convincing themselves that the race isn’t over – Trump’s political advisers are reportedly discussing a series of television ads and rallies to sow doubt about Biden’s victory – but back on planet earth, the math is the math: whether or not you liked the result, Biden will be the 46th president of the United States. Even some of Trump’s own family members, including his wife, Melania, are trying to talk sense into him.
One reason American democracy is held in such esteem is because the US government continues to operate, regardless of which candidate wins or loses an election. American students are taught at an early age that America is a nation where a peaceful transfer of power between administrations is a principle to be cherished. Every president in US history who has been denied a second term nonetheless accepted the will of the American electorate, handed over the reins of government to the victor, and joined the inauguration ceremonies on January 20. It may be emotionally painful for many of them, but admitting defeat is a big part of the system. George H.W. Bush didn’t plan on losing to Bill Clinton, but that disappointment didn’t stop him from leaving a cordial note on top of the Resolute desk for the incoming commander-in-chief, wishing and praying for his success.