The Red Mirage and Mail-In Voting

Listened to a podcast tonight on possible scenarios around mail-in voting come this November, and they mentioned the idea of the Red Mirage.

In an election where mail-in voting will shatter records due to the Covid situation, states and media members are both struggling with how to handle Election Night and the calling of races.

In 2016, mail-voting was not slanted quite so much to one party or the other. Donald Trump actually had more mail-in ballots in Florida than Hillary Clinton did. But since then, Trump the his followers have railed against the practice. Couple that with liberals taking the pandemic more serously, and most pundits are (likely accurately) assuming mail-in voting to be much heavier for Democrats than the GOP this time around. Thus the fight by the GOP to restrict mail-in voting as much as possible. It’s more about protectionism than fairness. It’s not even been cleverly disguised. They haven’t needed to hide it.

Immediate Gratification

One of the rationales tossed around about mail-in voting is “we need to know who wins on Election Night”. Call me old fashion, but I’m okay with not knowing the winner that night. Enter the aforementioned Red Mirage, the idea than in person voting is quite possible going to be slanted to the Red team, then once mail-in ballots are counted, Biden could slide ahead. This is where the GOP has been clever with their gaming. If/when this happens, President Trump will be able to claim fraud. This is why he has repeatedly been asked this question about being patient on Election Night. Those who pay attention know this is entirely possible, if not likely. Those who have not been paying attention will be able to parrot right along.

Put It In Penn

And for extra fun, the folks over at FiveThirtyEight currently has Pennsylvania as the current most likely tipping point state. That means it is the most likely state to give either winner enough Electoral votes. With admittedly plenty of time for things to change before then, if Biden whens Pennsylvania, that most likely means he also won Wisconsin, Nevada, Michigan and Minnesota. If Trump wins Pennsylvania, that means he also probably won Florida, Arizona, North Carolina and Ohio. Guess who is not currently allowing mail-in voting to start before Election Night?

Yep, Pennsylvania. As is Michigan, but Pennsylvania has the chances to be a cluster come Election Day, or as they are already calling it, Election Week. They are already trying to lower expectations for timeliness.

Be Like Axel Rose

That seems less than ideal. But…I’m okay with that. I like my fast food and live sports betting to be quick. I’m okay with taking my time in picking the person to put in what use to be the most powerful position on the planet and ensuring as best as we can the results are accurate. So, to those who have been chanting to make America great again, which often is subtle code for a time decades ago when they could feel a superiority to “lessers”, see this as a perfect chance to practice some patiences (yeeeeeah, just a little patience), and wait on the Pony Express to arrive two days later with news from two towns over.


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