Time magazine turned a lot of heads on Friday with a story headlined “The Secret History of the Shadow Campaign That Saved the 2020 Election.” The story below it by Molly Ball confirms what that suggests — Trump lost, so the election (and democracy) were saved.
Many on social media flocked to the part about how a coalition of Trump-hating groups didn’t “rig” the election, they were “fortifying” it:
This is the inside story of the conspiracy to save the 2020 election, based on access to the group’s inner workings, never-before-seen documents and interviews with dozens of those involved from across the political spectrum. It is the story of an unprecedented, creative and determined campaign whose success also reveals how close the nation came to disaster. “Every attempt to interfere with the proper outcome of the election was defeated,” says Ian Bassin, co-founder of Protect Democracy, a nonpartisan rule-of-law advocacy group. “But it’s massively important for the country to understand that it didn’t happen accidentally. The system didn’t work magically. Democracy is not self-executing.”
That’s why the participants want the secret history of the 2020 election told, even though it sounds like a paranoid fever dream–a well-funded cabal of powerful people, ranging across industries and ideologies, working together behind the scenes to influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information. They were not rigging the election; they were fortifying it. And they believe the public needs to understand the system’s fragility in order to ensure that democracy in America endures.
Once again, the media shamelessly declare that electing Democrats and “saving elections” are the same thing. The Ian Bassin quote here is pitch-perfect in describing the media’s self-image. Democracy doesn’t work magically, it doesn’t save itself. It needs careful “fortifying” from the all-knowing liberal media elites.
And it’s typically hilarious that Ball touts Bassin’s Project Democracy as “nonpartisan,” when you can see on their website the co-founders are Bassin, an associate counsel from 2009 to 2011 in the Obama-Biden White House, and Justin Florence, who also worked on the Obama-Biden legal team, and as senior counsel for Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse at the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Ball touted how the AFL-CIO and the Chamber of Commerce offered a joint statement on Election Day, “in which the forces of labor came together with the forces of capital to keep the peace and oppose Trump’s assault on democracy.” She also celebrated how “operatives scrambled to shore up America’s institutions as they came under simultaneous attack from a remorseless pandemic and an autocratically inclined president.” The election had to be “saved” from the president.
What was “saved” here was the election result Time so desperately wanted in 2016, when they posted two covers with Trump’s face melting (the second one into a puddle.) When the people follow the careful instructions of liberal reporters, democracy is saved. When the people elect a media-basher, then “the system didn’t work magically.”