Good Morning DC: America Nears A Cliffhanger

"Good Morning DC" takes you to the heart of the stories that matter through the eyes of the editor-in-chief, Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer.


 

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Good Morning, DC! 

Trump went all-in for Georgia, a center-right state, to bring Perdu and Loeffler over the finish line. Biden did the same for 33-year-old Jonathan Ossoff and Warnock, but only for ten minutes. He then left the parking lot. 

Who will win in Georgia today? It's up to the voters to decide if they will give the Biden administration a full mandate to legislate over the next four years. Political stability is long overdue, but in Washington, DC, enemies are much easier to make than friends. Vicious politics naturally gravitate toward All-Out-War and Machiavellianism. Voters are confused. 

Last night in Georgia, split screens offered the two realities of America, even after the presidential election, equally divided. Trump offered unrelenting advocacy for the Republican ticket. 

"There's no way we lost Georgia,” said Trump in his opening sentence at the rally in front of the audience, who greeted him with “USA, USA, USA” chants. "That was a rigged election," he began.

"One thing I have learned about Republicans is that they never forget. Watch what's going to come out. Watch what's going to be revealed,” Trump told his supporters. "I hope Mike Pence comes through for us," he said, moving fast to say to the world that, "We won the election in a landslide." 

"The Democrats are trying to steal the White House; You cannot let them steal the Senate," Trump offered the election punchline that sent social media in overdrive. 

Republicans need 60% turnout to win over absentee ballots of those who vote for Democrats. 

At the parking lot drive-in rally for the Democrats, Joe Biden spoke for only ten minutes

The Vice President emerged from his plane at 4:13 PM, wearing a "vote" face mask, and waved to the press but did not respond to questions shouted over the whine of the Gulfstream's engines. Biden arrived at the event site, a field of parking lots between the old Braves stadium and the 1996 Olympic torch, at 4:27 PM. A quick survey revealed plates from Georgia, Virginia, and Florida, but none from California. 

"Folks, this is it. It's a New Year, and tomorrow can be a new day for Georgia and America," announced the President-Elect. After ten minutes, he left. 

Will Trump restore military action to remain in power through the next term? Former Secretaries of Defense expressed their concerns in a Washington Post op-ed, and their words echo throughout the countdown to January 6. "There's no role for the U.S. military in determining the outcome of a U.S. election," national security leaders reiterated. 

Many people see the objection that will happen on Wednesday, January 6, as an attempted active coup of the U.S. government. Is that what Kamala Harris sees as well? 

"Let me just tell you something: We're going to be inaugurated, period," Harris stated her peace. 

The Pentagon has approved DC Mayor Muriel Bowser's request for National Guard presence at the "Stop the Steal" rally on Wednesday, January 6. Members of the public and anyone attending the events are warned that District law prohibits anyone from carrying a firearm at a protest and within 1,000 feet of any First Amendment activity. It is illegal to open-carry firearms in Washington DC, and anyone who does will be arrested. "We will not allow people to incite violence, intimidate our residents, or cause destruction in our city," Bowser said.

Kelly Loeffler announced at the eleventh hour that she would object to Electoral College certification on January 6. Trump ally, Senator Kevin Cramer, said last night that he wouldn't object to the Electoral College votes when they are counted. "Unless overwhelmingly persuasive evidence is presented before the Senate when we debate the objections – I will not vote to reject the results,” he added.

Senator Josh Howley, a former prosecutor and Yale Law School graduate with a background in constitutional law, sees the objection on January 6 as his only opportunity to speak up on behalf of his constituents. 

"I cannot vote to certify the electoral college results on January 6 without raising the fact that some states, particularly Pennsylvania, failed to follow their state election laws. And I cannot vote to certify without pointing out the unprecedented effort of mega-corporations, including Facebook and Twitter, to interfere in this election, in support of Joe Biden. At the very least, Congress should investigate allegations of voter fraud and adopt measures to secure our elections' integrity. But Congress has so far failed to act," he said. 

The rationale for the objection he offered to Bret Baier on FOX NEWS is that even though Trump won't proceed into his second term, he has a responsibility to share his concerns, a practice that the Democrats used to object to in 2005

However, critics of the objection see this differently, as an opportunistic political move by Republican senators to raise false hopes of the people who voted for Trump and create a political spectacle. Interestingly, in 2005, Nancy Pelosi said that objection is "democracy at work" and that "this debate is fundamental to our democracy." 

What is different now is that the objections' intention in 2005 was not to change the election outcome, but to raise concerns about election integrity. Trump insists that he won the election, and Republicans, by and large, do not believe that Biden won the 2020 election. 

In Washington DC, everyone is talking about the leaked phone conversation between Trump and the Georgia Secretary of State. The Democrats call for censure of the President over the phone call. Two Democratic members of Congress have asked the FBI to open an "immediate criminal investigation" into Donald Trump. 

Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany was outraged last night on FOX NEWS by the leak and insisted that the Georgia Secretary of State cannot be trusted. He recorded the President of the United States on the phone call with his lawyers, protested McEnany.

Ethics in Washington, DC, is not the most valuable currency; Positions on subjects change with the political breeze and on whims of convenience. Those who were angrily protesting against secretly recorded phone calls are now calling them heroic acts-- until the next opportunity to change their mind presents itself, of course. 

The UK is plunged back into full lockdown, but this one will be the strictest so far. PM Johnson promised the nation in a televised address that this will be the final push before life returns to normal. Britain's stay at home order only allows people to go out of their homes for essential shopping and exercise. 

On Sunday, December 26, 626 people were hospitalized in England, a 30% increase which sent alarm all over the government. Urgent action was needed to stop the NHS from collapsing and slow down the transmission that is now 50% faster with a newly discovered variant of COVID-19. But the worry against the pandemic does not end with a lockdown. A newly detected South African coronavirus mutation, scientists are worried, may evade the vaccine.

Michael Gove went on the morning TV circuit to announce that the UK government is looking at further international travel restrictions. England's lockdown "should" start being eased in March, Gove offered his forecast. In the meantime, the government's strong advice for the Brits would be for "individuals to stay where they are." 

Since we are still on the UK news, one aspect of the British courtroom storyline is the love story between Julian Assange and his now-fiancee Stella Moris, with whom he has two children, Max and Gabriel. During the Judge's ruling against extradition to the USA, she wept. Judge Baraitser showed human concern for Assange's well-being and the possibility of ending up like Jeffrey Epstein, committing suicide in a supermax security prison while the cameras were conveniently down. However, the ruling is not a step forward in protecting journalism. Judge Baraitser made it clear that the actions of Assange are outside the parameters of responsible journalism. 

The latest news on Ghislaine Maxwell is that the FBI tracked her down on July 2, 2020, by cell phone data. One possible takeaway? We live with our phones, the trackers of our movement, especially during the pandemic. Surveillance is on the rise.

That's a wrap for this morning. Trump pledges to "fight like hell" to stay in the White House. Biden-Harris will be inaugurated, period. America nears a cliffhanger. As Oscar Wilde once said, “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.” 

                                                                                                   ***

Good Morning DC takes you to the heart of the stories that matter. Get the most important stories of the day through the eyes of the editor-in-chief, Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer. Delivered to your inbox every morning.  

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