The Art of the Deal with It

I have exactly one thing to add to the deluge of commentary about this Tweet, and it is not ultimately about this Tweet, per se.

This is the case for a recount. If the President Elect thinks voter fraud was rampant, that means he thinks that the election we just had is illegitimate. Now, I understand that mortal men are fallible, which is why we would count on Clinton to raise the concern if there were, you know, evidence of a problem. (This weird Stein-raises-the-issue-by-proxy situation is weird, but suffice it to say, it befits the long shot nature of irregularities.) After all, why would Trump challenge an election he won? But if the President Elect thinks that the vote is sullied, it will fall to the next president to ensure that future elections are clean. He should want to the bottom of this. And if he does not want a recount, he should own that he lost popular vote.

That Trump had to say he won the popular vote—that he had to have the most flattering outcome—is flat out dangerous. Look beyond the damage this does to the integrity of future election, though don’t overlook it. When the trade deals he claims he is going to negotiate do not come at how he envisions, what is he going to do? We have a good idea from his spat with Mexican authorities. He is going to, in his capacity as Head of the American State, Tweet false things. The politicians who steer the ship in other countries will have to take hard stances to protect their images, entrenching Trump’s (and the nation’s) losses. His congressional spats will likely look much the same—which should be cold comfort to concerned liberals.

Heads of state cannot throw temper tantrums. If Trump does not learn the Art of the Deal with It when he loses, he could do real damage foreign and domestic.


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