The Big Lie

Kevin Drum lays the basics of what happened a year ago today.

Here are the basics. Gruesome details are available everywhere for anyone who’s interested.

  1. On November 3, 2020, Joe Biden was elected president.

  2. Donald Trump then spent months promoting lawsuits and other efforts designed to overturn the 2020 election, which he claimed Democrats had stolen. Fox News and the entire conservative press helped him along eagerly.

  3. Nothing worked, so as a last ditch effort Trump tried to compel VP Mike Pence to renounce his constitutional duty to certify the electoral vote.

  4. Pence did his best to figure out a way to comply, but in the end he couldn’t quite do it.

  5. On January 6, the day the electoral vote was scheduled to be certified in Congress, Trump speaks to a rally of protesters.

  6. After he leaves, a mob attacks the Capitol building, hoping to stop Pence from certifying the electoral vote and thereby keeping Trump in office.

  7. Trump spends the entire time refusing to make any kind of public statement urging the mob to stand down.

  8. In the immediate aftermath, Republicans denounce both Trump and the mob. However, as time goes by their criticism wanes. Today, most of them pretend that it was no big deal.

  9. Two-thirds of Republican voters agree because they think Democrats stole the election in the first place. Fox News and the others continue to promote this idea.

  10. If this happened in any other country, it would be called both an attempted insurrection and an attempted coup. Nothing like it has happened in American history.

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