My latest piece at @mmfa:

Conservative media keep excusing Trump's actions by comparing him to Stacey Abrams. They've got it backwards.

mediamatters.org/erick-erickson…
There's been quite the effort to treat what Trump is doing as totally normal, totally in line with what candidates have done in the past. Those efforts keep falling woefully short, none of them withstanding scrutiny.
"Well, Al Gore in 2000..."

1. Gore never went around yelling about fraud, he just wanted votes counted. If Trump just wanted recounts, that's fine. But he's seeking to have votes *thrown out*

2. It was 1 state and less than 600 votes that determined 2000. Very different now.
3. Using the 2000 comparison inadvertently highlights the dangers of a delayed transition. The 9/11 commission report specifically notes that the delayed transition may have contributed to early Bush admin unpreparedness ahead of the 9/11 attacks.
"Yes, but 2016..."

1. Clinton conceded the race the day after the election even though the electoral vote difference is identical

2. Some of Biden's leads over Trump are larger than ones Trump had over Clinton in key states
3. Jill Stein's recounts (only Wisconsin actually finished its recount; Michigan and Pennsylvania were stopped) were joined by Clinton lawyers for the sake of keeping tabs on the counting, not with an expectation that the states would flip.
4. The entire time, Trump was treated as the president-elect by the Obama administration and the transition carried on as it normally would have. That's very different from what Trump's doing now.
So there's really not a good modern analogy to make when it comes to presidential races.

And that's where we end up with comparisons from the right between Trump and Stacey Abrams.
The line goes something like this.

"Blah blah blah, Stacey Abrams STILL thinks she won!" or "The press turned Abrams into a hero BECAUSE she refused to concede!"

And ok, let's talk about those points for a moment because they're both wrong.
Some more examples I link to in my article:
People point to the fact that Abrams won't say that she concedes the 2018 race as some sort of "gotcha."

But they conveniently omit what came next in the speech she gave ending the race.
She wasn't happy about the outcome. OK.
She didn't think it was fair. OK.

But she ended the race. She didn't try to block Kemp from taking office, she didn't try to have Kemp votes thrown out. She didn't declare she won "in a landslide" as the GOP has done with Trump.
After the election, she put energy into voting rights advocacy, to make it easier for all eligible voters in Georgia to be able to make their voices heard at the ballot box. The legal cases her group has fought haven't been to overturn the last election, but to look forward.
But let's look back at the replies to one of the examples I listed earlier in the thread.

Here, one of the guys at Breitbart links to a story published in the New York Times Magazine in April 2019.

/See? Right there, it says that she says she won!/

So...
If you actually read the article (nytimes.com/interactive/20…) he linked to, you can see that the writer very specifically asked her what *exactly* she means when she says she won.

1. Kemp is legally governor. Obviously, that is not a "win" for her, but yes, it's important to say.
2. She views that election as a "win" because it helped show that there's a real appetite for democracy, because it was a sign that maybe Georgia wasn't as red of a state as had been long thought. It set the state for 2020.
3. There's no way to know whether the people who had been purged from the voter rolls by Kemp in the run-up to the election would have voted for her (or at all), but at the very least, the 2018 election drew a lot of attention to "use it or lose it" policies.
Conservatives like to talk about her as though she's just wandering the state telling people that she's the actual governor, but she very clearly is not doing that. She's pushing for positive change, holding elected officials accountable just as every voter should do.
So when she talks about "winning" and not conceding, she's referring to a belief that the system wasn't fair (which is fine, she's entitled to think that), and winning by creating change that will help other people in other races (or even herself in the future).
The most accurate parallel to Trump might be Republican Norm Coleman kstp.com/politics/norm-…, though Coleman eventually dropped his legal challenges to his Senate race vs. Al Franken, as well.
But the point of my piece is this: Trump's decision to continue legal battles in the face of clear defeat under the rules as they exist is one of the ways he is *different* than Abrams, not an example of a similarity.
Nobody expects Trump to take a stage and urge his supporters to give Biden “an open mind and the chance to lead,” as Clinton did with Trump the day after the 2016 election.

He doesn't have to be gracious. He doesn't have to say the words "I concede." It's not about that.
All anybody expects of him is to put an end to phony legal challenges, to admit that Biden will be the next president.
He can even paraphrase Abrams if he wants:

I could certainly bring a new case to keep this one contest alive, but I don’t want to hold public office if I need to scheme my way into the post. Because the title of President isn’t nearly as important as our shared title. Americans
Anyway, as always, thanks for reading: mediamatters.org/erick-erickson…

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More from @ParkerMolloy

20 Nov
She absolutely SHOULD be a figure of intense scorn. Her extreme partisanship is going to result in the rollout of vaccines being delayed. Every day she does this increases the odds that even more people die as a result.
So boo hoo boo hoo, just do your job, @GSAEmily
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Honestly, there's not a single journalist in that room who should still have a job after sitting there for this crap.
TRUMP: [lies about the election results]

JOURNALISTS: [sit there silently, making zero objection to it, not walking out, not interrupting, not doing... anything that is in any way helpful.]

Congrats, you're part of the reason things are this bad. Every single journalist there.
They're all so pathetic.
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This fuckin' guy
"Look, when the president calls you up to help him carry out his coup attempt, what, am I supposed to say no?"

Correct
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I still cannot believe how many people put their money through a shredder like that.
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"Ok, then."
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