Thank heavens for that! Tears all round as Harris and Biden finally win

It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster.

When I went to bed at 4:30 am on Wednesday I was so utterly miserable and depressed. It was looking like Trump might actually have won a second term with all the suffering and irreversible damage to the planet and division that would entail.

But, since then, it’s been looking like it was increasingly a matter of time until Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were declared the victors. That moment happened just before 4:30 pm this afternoon. I turned on the telly after an afternoon of delivering leaflets and dog walking just as the declaration was made. I would like to thank all my friends in various WhatsApp groups for helping me to say sane. The Scottish Lib Dem Women chat and the  chat which Steve Jolly set up must have had 3 million messages by now at least, and all of them have been therapeutic.

I’m not going to lie, the tears have not stopped much since then. And every time they seem to be about to stop, something like this happens:

Like many others, I’ve been addicted to CNN for the past 4 days. What a brilliant team they are. They are not afraid to call out the bullshit when they see it. John King, Anderson Cooper, Jake Tapper, Abby Phillip, Alisyn Camerota and many others have all managed to make sense of what is going on. We are all more familiar with places we had never heard of. I feel like I need to visit Maricopa County, Eyrie County, Fulton County and the like, as the places where history was made.

One of the most powerful moments came from Van Jones this afternoon. Someone who has been on the sharp end of Trump’s divisive, racist actions over the past four years. It makes you realise the damage Trump has done. President and Trump are two words which should never have gone together.

Ed Davey has sent his congratulations to the winners

People around the world will now be breathing a huge sigh of relief. Over the past four years Donald Trump has fed a new divisive form of politics, testing American democracy to its very limits. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s victory isn’t just democratic, it may have saved US democracy.

“I’d like to congratulate Joe Biden and urge him not only to deliver on his promise to restore liberal values in the United States, but also to ensure the US will play a constructive role in the international battle to beat Coronavirus. The virus, like all of the world’s biggest problems, can only be solved if we work together as an international community.

“I hope Joe Biden will be a president who fights alongside progressives for social justice and climate action at home and abroad.”

Other Lib Dems also welcomed the news:

Typical Jamie

This day belongs not just to Kamala and Joe but to people like Stacey Abrams. Narrowly beaten in the Georgia governor’s race two years ago because of voter suppression, she served her revenge cold by trying to bust down the barriers Republicans put up. And she’s helped secure not one but two Georgia Senate run-offs on 5th January. One of the Democrats, Jon Ossoff, is a mate of Alistair Carmichael’s from his days trying to save Troy Davis from execution. And there’s also the Crooked Media team, former Obama staffers whose media and activist network has given us hours of pleasure over the past four years since they formed in the wake of Hillary’s defeat.

And let’s not forget Jen O’Malley Dillon, Biden’s campaign manager who had to deliver a campaign against an incumbent in the middle of a pandemic.

I was surprised that Mike Dixon’s email the other day didn’t include an exhortation to all of us to get as many postal voters recruited as possible. We have seen that that has been key to Biden’s success.

And as for Trump, there are toys circling at velocity near a pram in the grounds of the White House. His comments over the past few days have been disgraceful, but he doesn’t have anyone of the credibility of James Baker, who helped George W Bush’s legal challenges back in 2000. Rudy Giuliani and Eric Trump don’t quite have the same reputation.

Who knows whether Biden will be the 46th President or the 47th if Trump stomps out in disgust or is 25th amendmented. There is no doubt going to be some drama between now and the inauguration on 20th January, but we can mainly just ignore it and look forward to the grown-ups being back in charge.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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17 Comments

  • Great post, Caron. What a huge relief! The last four days have shown me just how much I cared about this and how important the result is to all of us. The world is now a safer place.

    “Trump says he may leave the US if Biden wins.” I just hope he doesn’t decide to live in one of his properties in Scotland.

  • One of the reasons for TRUMP winning in the 1st place is that we Libs (in the US and elsewhere )became complacent and ignored tensions in society.Those tensions must be dealt with and NOT to let another Trump appear be always on our guard.
    It is a new start. It must gain momentum.

  • Best new this year. No longer will a President wake up every morning and say who can I hate today. End of populism ?-lets hope so.

  • Thanks for that post and all those tweets, Caron.

    The Van Jones video had me in tears. I have watched him for years and much admired him.

  • This has indeed been a very emotional day.

    Like many others, I was shattered when Trump won in 2016, and the last four years have been even worse than I feared.

    It is only when the pressure is lifted that you realise just how wound up you were. This is a day for all good people to celebrate.

  • Audrey Eager 7th Nov '20 - 7:55pm

    Epic WhatsApp group by Steve Jolly can only equalled by the 90 hour plus zoom call Pablo O’Hana from Manchester set up! #BringingPeopleTogether

  • @Caron

    Thanks for the great article.

    I for one look forward to not having to watch anymore CNN in to the early hours of the morning

    This is a fantastic day for democracy and common decency.
    No doubt America is going to be in for tumultuous few weeks on the trump side as I cannot see him going quietly and there is genuine fear for what he will encourage from some of his more “extreme” supporters.

    But today is a fantastic day for America and the whole world and on the path to healing.

    I hope America learns a lesson from postal voting and realises this is a great thing for democracy and encourages more engagement, which can only ever be a good thing.
    I hope America expands the infrastructure and encourages more of this for all future elections

  • John Marriott 7th Nov '20 - 9:10pm

    I do hope that, with Biden’s victory, the dystopian nightmare might be over. I’m not so sure. Trumpism has not gone away. After all, over 70 million Americans voted for it last week. It is still not certain which party will have a majority in the Senate (two ‘run off’ elections in Pennsylvania early next year will decide that). Then, who knows what damage Trump can do in the next couple of months before he hopefully steps down?

    The reaction from some contributors to this post illustrates a kind of Lib Dem mentality that puts so much store in the campaign without considering what to do afterwards. The real hard work, assuming that there is no trouble post election, will be how Biden restrains the wilder elements within a broad Democrat coalition and how far the Senate Republicans are prepared to play ball. Will Republican Senate Leader, Mitch McConnell, take up with Biden where he left off with Obama? If he doesn’t end up being prosecuted will Trump carry on his campaign via the media, even if the Republican Party tries to distance itself from him? There are still enough people out there prepared to continue to feed his ego. Let’s face it. If COVID hadn’t come along it’s quite likely that unfortunately it would have been Joe Biden, who had made the concession speech that Trump is unlikely ever voluntarily to make.

  • David Evans 8th Nov '20 - 11:42am

    n hunter and John Marriott are right. The real hard work starts now. I wish Joe Biden and his supporters all the best, but the first thing he must do is stop things getting worse.

    Only then he can start to make the world a safer place, undermine divisive populism, and face up to the real problems that have created this division.

  • Gerald Stewart 8th Nov '20 - 1:29pm

    It is a shame that the president-elect is clearly ill, he introduced his grand daughter as his dead son recently,there have been other symptoms during his campaign.
    What odds he steps aside for Harris before the end of his first term?

  • @ Gerald Stewart Having watched the you-tube clip it was ‘clearly’ nothing of the sort….. We can do without your version of fake news, thank you, Mr Stewart. The President Elect was about to say ‘Here is my son Beau’s (daughter) …… and went on to introduce his grand-daughter, Natalie.

    For a man who has endured so many personal tragedies, President elect Biden comes across as a very decent breath of fresh air to what America has endured over the last four years. If only we could have a change in the UK.

  • David Garlick 8th Nov '20 - 3:29pm

    What a relief! Suffered unexplained depression bordering on anger which has now lifted.

    Now for Prime Minister Boris Johnson. He must be the next leader to go surely?

  • Barry Lofty 8th Nov '20 - 3:38pm

    Yes read just read on the bbc news bulletin that Johnson is looking forward to working with the President elect as they have so much in common, has anyone told him who actually won?

  • Lorenzo Cherin 8th Nov '20 - 4:04pm

    A lovely response here, thanks for it, Caron.

    When you are married to one from another country originally, you marry it.

    Today is the birthday of my dear, late father. he was italian. He never got to visit America, though always wanted to, and loved the fact I married an American.

    Today is a day, my wife and I are thrilled. And my father, who delighted in obama, Biden would be

  • Lorenzo Cherin 8th Nov '20 - 4:09pm

    And David is correct on Joe Biden, a man of warmth and goodness. A fine person.

  • John Marriott 8th Nov '20 - 6:38pm

    I would like to drill down on my comment that, without COVID, Trump would be looking forward to a second term. This would be based entirely on the US economy, which is clearly the yardstick by which he wanted his administration to be judged and which energised many of his fans.

    Yes, unemployment was down and growth was happening in a big way in the USA before the virus struck. However, these were originally triggered by policies the Obama administration had begun. Undoubtedly the tax cuts, especially to Trump’s fellow billionaires encouraged them to increase activity and to hire more people. However, having a job is not the only story. Without adequate healthcare and indeed a certain amount of wealth distribution including a decent basic income living standards and a feeling of continued well being are surely not guaranteed to increase for the majority of US citizens. What about the ‘tremendous’ infrastructure projects I seem to remember he promised? There has got to be more on offer than just bread and circuses, although that’s clearly as far as Trump’s philosophy stretched.

    What his handling of COVID really exposed was how inadequate he was for the job he campaigned for. As for his performance on the world’s stage. As someone who has dabbled in political administration I know that it’s more difficult than those with no experience think. Handing a job like ‘Leader of the Free World’ to a businessman, media personality and, in the eyes of many, a flawed human being was always a huge gamble.

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