Trump Accidentally Concedes

Because he's an idiot.

President Trump this morning quote-tweeted Fox News personality Jesse Watters with this:

While obviously intended to continue his idiotic and seditious claim that he himself won the election (by a lot!), it inadvertently sends the opposite message: Biden won.

POLITICO didn’t miss a beat, headlining their report “Trump edges closer to conceding the election.”

President Donald Trump has yet to concede the presidential election, but on Sunday he came close to acknowledging that he lost in a tweet.

“He won because the Election was Rigged,” Trump tweeted. “NO VOTE WATCHERS OR OBSERVERS allowed, vote tabulated by a Radical Left privately owned company, Dominion, with a bad reputation & bum equipment that couldn’t even qualify for Texas (which I won by a lot!), the Fake & Silent Media, & more!”

Trump’s tweet was posted with a clip of Fox News’ Jesse Watters casting doubt on the outcome of the election.

In the 12 days since the election, Trump has consistently claimed victory, while baselessly asserting that Joe Biden and his fellow Democrats had cheated to make it appear that he won. Sunday’s tweet, though not clearly worded, suggested Biden was the victor.

Biden garnered 306 votes in the Electoral College, to Trump’s 232.

It’s obviously silly and meaningless rather than evidence Trump plans to concede any time soon. But it does lead further credence to the notion Trump damned well knows he lost the election and won’t be able to play President much longer.

FILED UNDER: *FEATURED, Campaign 2020, Donald Trump
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Mikey says:

    49 words in that Tweet and the first two actually aren’t bullshit.

    Progress!

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  2. mattbernius says:

    The next question is whether or not this is enough to enable the GSA, or rather Emily Murphy, to allow the Biden Transition team their access. It was an official presidential statement (because we live in the dumbest timeline)

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  3. DrDaveT says:

    So, submitting false claims to the government is illegal under the False Claims Act (31 USC §§3729-3733), which does not require that the claimant knows the claims to be false — it’s sufficient that they “act in reckless disregard or in deliberate ignorance of the truth or falsity of the information.” While in general freedom of speech is protected diligently, the law makes a big exception for speech intended to defraud the federal government. Falsely claiming that your opponent did not legitimately win the election would seem to fall under that exception.

    I cannot tell you how much it would please me to see Biden’s Justice Department prosecute Trump. The fines are pretty trivial, but getting it on the public record that these were lies has great value.

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  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Oliver Willis
    @owillis

    The “liberal media” keeps making it clear they only want to listen to one group of Americans even after two elections show their point of view is in the minority
    Quote Tweet

    Sewell Chan
    @sewellchan
    · 22h
    Today, @latimesopinion devoted our entire letters page to Trump voters.
    https://latimes.com/opinion/story/2020-11-14/handing-our-entire-letters-page-over-trump-voters
    Show this thread

    Oliver Willis
    @owillis

    2016, 3 million more Americans choose the democrat
    Media: We need to hear from Trump voters

    2020, 5 million more Americans choose the democrat
    Media: We need to hear from Trump voters

    I’m tired of this crap.

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  5. drj says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    2020, 5 million more Americans choose the democrat
    Media: We need to hear from Trump voters

    Well, they represent the “Real America,” you know; namely the part that contributes only 29% to total US GDP:

    Counties won by Democratic President-elect Joe Biden make up 70 percent of all U.S. economic output—or gross domestic product (GDP)—a new post-election study finds. […]

    “Trump’s losing base of 2,497 counties represents just 29% of the economy,” the post-election analysis co-authors found.

    * A minority of voters? Check!
    * Being systematically overrepresented in Congress and the Electoral College? Check!
    * Depending on welfare from Blue States/Counties (while bitching about govt spending)? Check!

    And still it’s not enough for these people…

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  6. Scott F. says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:
    Yeah, we’re not going to hear any public outcry for the Republicans to do some soul searching to figure out what the Biden voter really wants.

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  7. charon says:

    Not so fast:

    Straight from Donnie himself:

    https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1327979630477922304

    He only won in the eyes of the FAKE NEWS MEDIA. I concede NOTHING! We have a long way to go. This was a RIGGED ELECTION!

    A campaign spokesman even issued a clarification to an NPR reporter:

    https://twitter.com/tamarakeithNPR/status/1327979889883045888

    “The President was referring to the mindset of the media. His goal remains to un-rig the election and continue exposing voting irregularities and unconstitutional election management by Democratic officials.”

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  8. Teve says:

    “The Trump administration is blocking funding for Joe Biden‘s transition. The money is needed to do things like hire staff and perform background checks, and Trump doesn’t understand why that money is needed. Nobody in his administration went through a background check, and only a third of them went to jail..”

    -James Corden

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  9. Paine says:

    Can you imagine playing Monopoly or Settlers of Catan with this loser? You’d beat him and he’d spend the next few weeks griping about rigged dice and bad card draws. He’s the worst…

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  10. Teve says:

    @drj: Jesus H. Christ.

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  11. drj says:

    @Teve:

    Well, it shouldn’t matter, of course.

    But they were the ones to start about “real Americans,” “coastal elites,” and “multi-generational welfare dependency.”

    So I’m open to bringing some economic pressure to bear.

    “No taxation without representation,” right?

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  12. CSK says:

    @charon:
    How odd. I don’t recall seeing anything at all about the “FAKE MEDIA” in Trump’s initial Tweet.

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  13. Teve says:

    Somebody here, I don’t recall who, said that the fundamental thing to understand about Donald Trump is that he’s a moron.

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  14. DrDaveT says:

    @drj:

    So I’m open to bringing some economic pressure to bear.

    There’s a long precedent for denying federal funds to states that won’t comply with some desired social engineering policy. No education funds if you won’t desegregate your schools; no transportation funds if you won’t reduce the highway speed limit to 55; etc.

    If your state wishes to exercise its sovereign right to refuse to mandate basic public health measures, the federal government is perfectly willing to let you do that — but will not subsidize it.

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  15. CSK says:

    @Teve:
    That sounds like Michael Reynolds, though it could have been any of us.

    ReplyReply
  16. Teve says:

    @drj: my parents are from southeastern kentucky. I’ve been to Owsley county. I’ve been to Harlan county. Several times. Approximately 98% white, 50% on food stamps .

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  17. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Teve: @CSK:
    No, I agree he’s a moron, but I’ve characterized him as a stupid psychopath. Or as a lazy, stupid psychopath. Sometimes as a weak, scared, lazy, stupid psychopath. But moron is definitely a big part of the picture.

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  18. Lounsbury says:

    @DrDaveT: No they would have no value – excepting to feed the Trump machine. A waste of time and effort, proving nothing to those not already convinced, serving no effective purpose at all.

    ReplyReply
  19. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @charon: Indeed. The only part of the message that Trump’s followers will process was “Election was Rigged.” Fortunately, his followers seem to be about as committed to their belief that the election was rigged as I am to the notion that Nixon was railroaded–I believe it, but don’t care enough to “right the wrong.”

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  20. Jay L Gischer says:

    I wondering if Trump’s thinking isn’t now along the lines of “So, Joe, you want me to sign off on this transition stuff? That would be pretty nice, right? All that money, and access? You need it, don’t you? There’s something I need, though.”

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  21. CSK says:

    @Jay L Gischer:
    Trump may not know that Biden can’t pardon him for any state offenses. The SDNY will still be after Trump when he leaves office.

    ReplyReply
  22. Mister Bluster says:

    Approximately 98% white, 50% on food stamps.

    Government Cheese

    ReplyReply
  23. Michael Reynolds says:

    @Jay L Gischer:
    He might entertain that thought as a passing rage/revenge fantasy, but he’d reject it as it inevitably makes him the supplicant.

    I suspect he’s having a very hard time with this. Not only is he humiliated in front of literally the entire world, but he’s facing a long, all-downhill slide. He’s too old to re-invent himself, and he knows that for the rest of his life he’ll be the ‘ex’ or ‘former’ at the very least, and likely the ‘disgraced.’

    There’s no career after being president. Jimmy Carter gives speeches and builds houses, George W. Bush paints, Obama remains effortlessly cool. What’s Trump going to do? What’s the sequel to wannabe autocrat? A Trump media empire is a fantasy, he’s not Murdoch or Ailes, he’s a clown. He’s not going to be on-air talent, he’s a bore in that context.

    He’s stupid but he has the instincts of a psychopath, so he knows he’s got nowhere to go, nothing to do. His prospects are endless lawsuits, criminal cases, debt crises, failure and more failure. If he were Japanese or an ancient Roman he’d be testing the blade on his sword.

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  24. CSK says:

    @Michael Reynolds:
    OANN and Newsmax would probably love to have him as a commentator, but no matter how much he purports to love them, I don’t think either one is a big enough deal to satisfy him.

    His latest plan is to start a digital media empire that will destroy Fox, but I don’t think Trump, deep down, believes that “digital” is real the way he believes that old-fashioned television is real. He apparently can’t operate a persona computer.

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  25. Kylopod says:

    @CSK:

    1. The SDNY is federal. But yes, a pardon wouldn’t stop him from being brought up on state charges.

    2. Trump’s leaving office is not a condition Dems have to agree to.

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  26. CSK says:

    @Kylopod:
    Yes; I know about the SDNY. A stupid slip on my part; I was thinking of the state charges, which certainly aren’t going away.

    I’m a little confused about why you’re reminding me that “Trump’s leaving office is not a condition Dems have to agree to.” I know that, and I don’t think I implied it.

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  27. Kylopod says:

    @CSK:

    I’m a little confused about why you’re reminding me that “Trump’s leaving office is not a condition Dems have to agree to.” I know that, and I don’t think I implied it.

    I was more piggybacking off Jay L Gischer‘s idea of Trump offering a smooth transition in return for a pardon. I realize neither of you was endorsing that sort of deal, but I felt it needed to be said outright.

    ReplyReply
  28. charon says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    No, I agree he’s a moron,

    Not now, back when he was elected.

    His senile dementia has progressed to imbecility, too stupid to grade as a moron.

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  29. charon says:

    @Kylopod:

    NY State AG has been showing some serious interest in Trump.

    ReplyReply
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  30. Michael Reynolds says:

    @charon:
    The civil lawsuits will be almost as much fun. Dozens of cases of sexual assault and fraud, and poor Donald can’t keep decent lawyers as president, who’s going to work for a guy notorious for not paying people?

    I was giving good advice when I said he should pardon everyone, resign, have Pence pardon him, and GTFO of the country ahead of New York State and a phalanx of accusers. There are no winning moves for Donald, he’s screwed, it’s time to run.

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  31. Michael Reynolds says:

    Also, a thought just occurred: you can’t be pardoned prospectively, you can only be pardoned for past crimes. So the inevitable Trumpian obstruction of justice, evidence tampering and perjury he’ll resort to in an effort to head off civil suits will be chargeable as crimes.

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  32. dazedandconfused says:

    IMO he has accepted that he has lost. He drove right past the adoring crowd in DC yesterday to play golf. If he seriously believes he still has a chance he would have leapt on to that stage. The pretending is necessary in maintaining $ucker$ cash flow, contributing to his legal defense scam.

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  33. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Something else to keep in mind, in the past Trump kept civil lawsuits at bay because he through lots of procedural roadblocks, so that it no longer was affordable for the plaintiff. But in a post-presidency Trump lawsuit, there are likely to be many of his political enemies, both R and Dem, who will be more than happy to fund civil lawsuits against Trump, ala Peter Thiel funding Hulk Hogan via Gawker.

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  34. CSK says:

    @Sleeping Dog:
    I’ll never forget Trump gloating that he enjoyed suing writers, “because it costs me only a few dollars, and bankrupts them.”

    ReplyReply
    1
  35. Sleeping Dog says:

    @CSK:

    Plus the sadistic pleasure of watching him answer the opposing attorney’s questions under oath.

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  36. Monala says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: ABC This Week also did a feature on Trump voters.

    Question: how do we get the media to stop this sh*t? How do we get them to focus on the millions more Americans who didn’t vote for Trump, who have real needs and concerns and issues that need to be heard?

    What would work? A letter-writing campaign? An alternative platform highlighting other Americans? A boycott? What? Because I am infuriated by the idea of the media spending the next four years spotlighting these people again.

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  37. DrDaveT says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    There’s no career after being president. Jimmy Carter gives speeches and builds houses

    I think you are forgetting huge swaths of what Jimmy Carter did after being president. Plus, there’s always Taft…

    Not that anyone would want Trump’s help for anything. I can’t imagine any task that wouldn’t be harder with his help than without it.

    ReplyReply
  38. DrDaveT says:

    @Monala:

    Question: how do we get the media to stop this sh*t? How do we get them to focus on the millions more Americans who didn’t vote for Trump, who have real needs and concerns and issues that need to be heard?

    I understand your frustration, but I also understand that “40% of Americans dangerously deranged” is a more compelling story than “60% of Americans not obviously mentally ill.”

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  39. Monala says:

    @DrDaveT: More compelling to whom? Are you telling me the media can’t find compelling stories among black voters in Georgia or Pennsylvania, or Native American voters in Arizona? Or do they just assume most Biden voters are their upper middle class suburban white neighbors, nothing to see here?

    Also, “understand Trump voters” may have been compelling back in 2016, when they were caught off-guard by Trump’s win. Now, though, when that story has been done again and again?

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  40. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @drj: Thanx for that link.

    ReplyReply
  41. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Monala: What?

    I don’t know about stopping them from doing it but a baseball bat would get their attention. Yeah I know, too many knees, not enough bats. I got nothin’.

    ReplyReply
  42. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Monala: Are you telling me the media can’t find compelling stories among black voters in Georgia or Pennsylvania, or Native American voters in Arizona?

    C’mon, who cares about them? s//

    ReplyReply
  43. gVOR08 says:

    @Monala:

    How do we get them to focus on the millions more Americans who didn’t vote for Trump, who have real needs and concerns and issues that need to be heard?

    I don’t know. I’ve seen it seems like hundreds of diner dives into Trump country, but never to a coffee shop in Blue country, even down the street from their building. Some months ago NYT said they’d quit doing these expeditions into Trump country , but they’ve kept doing it. The MSM have appealed to us a thousand times to try to understand the Trump base. I don’t recall ever reading an appeal for them to try to understand the rest of us.

    I think they’re still trying to understand it themselves, but they seem unable to. I think they’re blinded by two things. First, they don’t want to see, or at least admit to, the role race plays. Second, they can’t acknowledge that these people, and the rest of us, really have been screwed over by the NY and DC elites they represent.

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  44. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    There’s no career after being president.

    For the few good ones, they become statesmen. Carter didn’t just “build houses”. He was a calm voice in international politics that allowed a lot of things to happen. Carter was a bad president (because he was too weak and honest), but those four years gave him the opportunity to be a great statesman.

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  45. JohnSF says:

    @CSK:

    ” ….a digital media empire that will destroy Fox”

    War with Koala Kong?
    Come at the King, you best not miss.

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  46. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    Read something about the Nobel committee is scratching around for someone to award the peace prize to and are not finding anyone worthy. Giving it to Jimmy Carter as a lifetime contribution should be considered.

    Oh, and wouldn’t that set trump off.

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  47. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @gVOR08: Of course, some of the drives into Trump territory are quests for the holy grail of what it will take to come back to some semblance of functioning government based on bipartisan progress.

    (Talk about wishing in one hand and shpitting in the other. [eyeroll])

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  48. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker: And of course, that quest is based on Murc’s (?) Law–only Democrats have agency.

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  49. charon says:

    https://twitter.com/TheRealHoarse/status/1328108990086189058

    This is how Trump inflicts maximum damage on the GOP. Trump likes to screw his supporters when things go south.

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  50. Jay L Gischer says:

    @Michael Reynolds: You might be right. Or he might have a process that looks like “be annoying as possible until people ask you what’s up? What can we do?” Then they are the supplicant. I’ve seen this strategy outlined in (bad) business books.

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  51. CSK says:

    @charon:
    This is a distinct possibility, although with someone as infantile as Trump, it’s really not possible to predict what he’ll do.

    ReplyReply
  52. charon says:

    @CSK:

    I forgot to mention, sadism is part of the psychopathic malignant narcissist syndrome. This is how he is.

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  53. CSK says:

    @charon:
    Well, he enjoys torturing people, doesn’t he? What a loathsome human being.

    ReplyReply
  54. james hunt says:

    YOU ARE SO FULL OF CRAP!!! YOU EITHER CONCEDE OR YOU DO NOT!!! YOU IDIOTS HE HAS NOT CONCEDED AND HE WILL BE THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!!!!! WHEN HE WINS DEWINE IS GONE FOR HIS STAEMENTS YESTURDAY! MOST PEOPLE IN OHIO ARE IDIOTS TO ELECT THE OFFICIALS IN OHIO THAT THEY DO! BUCKEYES ARE DRY WOTHLESS NUTS! WHEN TRUMP TAKE THE OATH ON JANUARY 20TH DEWINE IS GONE THE EASY OR HARD WAY!!!!!

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  55. charon says:

    @james hunt:

    YOU IDIOTS HE HAS NOT CONCEDED AND HE WILL BE THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!!!!!

    That is sure a strongly held belief!

    Here is a prediction I think vastly more likely:

    https://twitter.com/Olivianuzzi/status/1328098724585873408

    I have heard a lot of predictions about Donald Trump refusing to leave office, but my prediction is he will leave suddenly. The scenario I can picture most easily is this: sometime soon, he travels to Mar-a-Lago for the weekend as he always has, but this time he just stays there.

    ReplyReply
  56. Jax says:

    Behold…..feast thine eyes upon the fetid swamp creature risen from the depths of some unknown basement, bursting with indignant fury and spittle-flecked all caps.

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  57. inhumans99 says:

    @james hunt:

    You do know that it does not matter if Trump “concedes,” as that is purely a matter of courtesy that one Presidential candidate applies to one another if they can see that they lost. Trump lost, regardless of whether he wants to admit it or not so Biden will be sworn in.

    Seriously, you do know that Biden being sworn in does not only move forward if Trump concedes, right? The states have all said they are not willing to back an attempted coup and the members of the Electoral College in states that Biden won will indeed be placing their votes for Biden.

    I ask again, do you understand how this works?

    At this point no one care is Trump concedes or not and while he may want to show up next to Biden to be sworn in on 01/20, after Biden takes the oath he can literally treat Trump as a trespasser if he refuses to vacate the White House regardless of whether or not Trump thinks he is still President.

    That is just how it works James, and I will ask yet again…do you understand how this works?

    Sorry your guy did not win the election, but that’s life. I wanted to Clinton to win but she didn’t and we got Trump. He had a shot at using his powers of persuasion to convince voters to give him another 4 years but the majority of voters decided not to buy what Trump was selling.

    I hope you internalize this soon enough because you will be yelling at your TV on 01/20 when Biden is sworn in and all of this stress you are putting on your body can’t be good for your health.

    ReplyReply
  58. Grewgills says:

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