Tuesday, November 3, 2020

-Donald Trump: philosopher, motivational speaker, loser

After four years, one impeachment, eight months of pandemic, 87,262 debates, and stomach aches as numerous as the stars in the heavens, we have reached Election Day. Congratulations: You survived.

  • Now to find out whether Donald Trump did. More than 100 million Americans cast their ballots early, almost half of them in key swing states. Perennially unsung hero Judge Emmett Sullivan has made it his mission to make sure each of those votes gets counted. After ordering the Postal Service to get its shit together on Sunday, Sullivan today ordered postal inspectors to sweep USPS facilities for undelivered ballots in 12 districts that have reported slow ballot movement. Someone please make a note to build a statue of this man, ideally in Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s front yard.
  • It wouldn’t be a 2020 Election Day without one last wave of malarkey. Voters in several states have been hit with an estimated 10 million robocalls warning them to “stay safe and stay home.” In the predominantly Black city of Flint, MI, a robocall misinformation campaign has been telling residents they should vote on Wednesday (i.e. after the election is over, and they can no longer vote) because of long lines at the polls. It’s not immediately clear where the calls came from; the FBI has opened an investigation. Meanwhile, Rudy Giuliani wrapped up his career helping Russia spread election disinformation with an Election Day interview on the Kremlin-backed network RT. 
  • Trump appeared on Fox & Friends on Tuesday morning to deliver the profound closing message that everyone is very mean to him, while Joe Biden paid a visit to his childhood home in Scranton, PA, before heading to Philadelphia to “run through the tape, man.” (Hell yeah.) While some polling places around the country have seen long lines—North Carolina even extended the hours at some polling sites due to delays—there thankfully haven’t been widespread reports of disruptions or voter intimidation.

Polls will be closing as this email hits your inbox, most of our work is done (you got this, lawyers), and it is now time to stress-eat and pray to Steve Kornacki. Here’s what to keep in mind as you watch the returns:

  • Ignore exit polls. They’re unreliable in the best of times, and given the astounding volume of mail-in ballots this year, they’re worse than useless. As we start getting real results, breathe and have patience. This is a good breakdown of when polls close and what to expect hour by hour—with the asterisks that North Carolina now won’t release any results until after 8:15 p.m. ET, and Michigan’s secretary of state has said we could have results there sooner than expected. We’ve also got a handy cheat sheet of what to watch for over, and when to expect results in key states, over on Vote Save America dot com
  • The biggest thing to know is that Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Michigan couldn’t begin processing mail-in ballots until today, so we should expect longer waits for results there (with that asterisk, again). Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina have already been processing mail-in ballots, so we could have definitive results there tonight, but don’t be surprised if results shift dramatically as different types of ballots are counted; Dan Pfieffer provides an easy cheat sheet in today’s Message Box. As always, all eyes will be on Florida: If Biden wins, he’s very likely our next president. If Trump wins, Biden still has a path, but we might be here in limbo for a while.
Whatever happens next, we go into this night knowing we’ve done all we could. Thank you for the work you’ve done to get here, thank you for being part of this community, and thank you for never giving up the fight, even when the puns got bad. We’re in this together for the long haul. And with that, let’s go watch our guy win

It's a quiet Tuesday night, not too much going on, so we thought we'd all just hang out in the Groupthread. We'll be breaking down the results as they come in, celebrating the wins, and deciding whether to saw off Florida. There’s no one we’d rather be with on Election Night than the Crooked team, even if it’s only virtually, and we’d love for you all to join us 

Deborah Birx risked President Trump’s wrath by calling for an aggressive response to the worsening pandemic, in an internal November 2 report leaked on...November 2. As far as salvaging her shredded credibility in the hopes of a post-Trump public-health career, good luck, Deb. As far as sending a clear message to Americans about the urgent danger we’re facing the day before the election, we’ll take it! Birx explicitly warned against large campaign events (again, on November 2), contradicted Trump’s repeated and false claim that high testing volume accounts for the country’s surge in cases, and noted that the country is “entering the most concerning and most deadly phase of this pandemic.” The U.S. reported more than 93,000 new coronavirus cases on Monday, marking the second highest daily total of the pandemic, after Friday.

Abortion access is on the ballot in Colorado and Louisiana, with heightened stakes now that Amy Coney Barrett is on the Supreme Court. In Colorado, voters will decide whether to ban abortions after 22 weeks, which could have a nationwide impact—many women from out of state travel to Colorado for later-term abortions. If the Court overturns Roe v. Wade, as it’s now poised to do, Louisiana is one of ten states that would immediately ban abortion through a “trigger law.” Voters in the state are now also being asked to adopt a constitutional amendment explicitly stating that there’s no state right to abortion or abortion funding. That amendment would make it all but impossible to challenge Louisiana’s abortion ban in court, in a post-Roe world. If Louisiana’s amendment passes, we can expect to see other red states follow suit. 

Today, as cities contemplate reopening and rebuilding their local economies, Lyft has expanded its Jobs Access Program to provide access to rides and additional job search support through Goodwill® and United Way in 20 major cities. A ride — whether it's on a Lyft bike, scooter, or rideshare — can go a long way towards supporting an individual’s economic mobility and recovery. In the first year of the Jobs Access Program, Lyft provided nearly 20,000 rides through its partners.

The program focuses on three key interventions in the employment pipeline that are critical to individual success, and where transportation can play a major role:

  • Rides to/from job training programs
  • Rides to/from job interviews
  • Rides to/from the first three weeks of employment, until individuals receive their first paycheck and begin to pay for their own transportation

Whether you’re in need of a ride or you want to donate and support others, the Jobs Access Hub makes it easy to take action. Qualifying individuals can use the Hub to see if a ride is available, and if so, Goodwill® or United Way will distribute the ride credits.

LyftUp is Lyft’s comprehensive effort to expand transportation access to those who need it most. Through LyftUp, Lyft partners with leading nonprofits to help provide access to free and discounted rides to individuals and families who lack affordable, reliable transportation.

A federal judge has blocked the Trump administration from enforcing a “public charge” wealth test on green card applications. 

56,000 Ohioans volunteered to be poll workers, allowing polling locations to stay open. 

Harris County, TX, voters had cast 1.5 million ballots as of 10 a.m., surpassing the total turnout of 11 states. 

Milwaukee has entered the chat.

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