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Lionel Shriver
Lionel Shriver

From Trumpism to lockdown, people believe in the craziest things

From the magazine
From Trumpism to lockdown, people believe in the craziest things

Following his disgruntled supporters’ rampage through the Capitol, Donald Trump’s fate hangs in the balance. But one artefact of this disreputable administration will survive Trump himself: doubt over the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election, shared by some 39 per cent of the electorate, including two-thirds of Republicans. However refuted in the courts, Republicans’ pervasive conviction that the election was ‘stolen’ must be partially rooted in their rollercoaster emotions while watching the returns. On election night, Trump seemed to be winning. Trump himself declared victory. Only across the following four days, as counts of mail-in ballots dribbled in, did the President’s lead slip agonisingly away. It’s far more upsetting to appear to win something only to be ‘robbed’ of that victory than to lose outright at the start.

Lionel Shriver

From Trumpism to lockdown, people believe in the craziest things

From the magazine
From Trumpism to lockdown, people believe in the craziest things

Following his disgruntled supporters’ rampage through the Capitol, Donald Trump’s fate hangs in the balance. But one artefact of this disreputable administration will survive Trump himself: doubt over the legitimacy of the 2020 presidential election, shared by some 39 per cent of the electorate, including two-thirds of Republicans. However refuted in the courts, Republicans’ pervasive conviction that the election was ‘stolen’ must be partially rooted in their rollercoaster emotions while watching the returns. On election night, Trump seemed to be winning. Trump himself declared victory. Only across the following four days, as counts of mail-in ballots dribbled in, did the President’s lead slip agonisingly away. It’s far more upsetting to appear to win something only to be ‘robbed’ of that victory than to lose outright at the start.

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All the latest analysis of the day's news

Latest from Coffee House

All the latest analysis of the day's news

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