A Near Thing, or Dewey Beats Truman

 

Ballot boxConservatives were excited by early vote totals from Virginia on Nov. 2. After all, Glenn Youngkin was up 10 points, a 20-point swing from the 2020 presidential election. Then reality intruded, as the lead shrank close to even. Yet, the major networks called the Virginia governor‘s race for Youngkin late Election Day night. The real numbers, just the facts, pointed to the possibility this would be another “Dewey Beats Truman” media failure, a stampede to get the story before the relevant facts were clear.

In the bright noonday sun, on Nov. 3, we saw the Democrats were not closing the gap in any of the three statewide executive races. Terry McAuliffe, almost certainly with detailed information about the uncounted precincts and the party split of the outstanding absentee ballots, conceded, followed by his lieutenant governor and attorney general running mates. Yet, it could have been otherwise, and we should have heard the straight facts late on Election Day evening.

The Virginia Department of Elections is to be commended for transparency and clear presentation of the numbers. The numbers that mattered were the vote difference between candidates, the number of precincts still not reporting, and the difference between number of absentee ballots requested and absentee ballots counted as received by the Department of Elections. Let’s go by the numbers through the state of the election on Nov. 3:

-2,727 of 2,855: number of precincts reporting.

-128: number of precincts still not reporting (2,855-2,727).

-1,658,633: votes for Youngkin.

-1,579,591: votes for McAuliffe.

-79,042: Youngkin vote lead.

-1,256,904: number of absentee ballots requested.

-1,181,427: number of absentee ballots returned.

-75,477: absentee ballots still not returned.

So, now we can see the actual lay of the vote landscape. Youngkin’s lead could not be overcome by remaining absentee ballots, even if they were all marked for McAuliffe (79,042-75,477 = 3565). Yet, it appears an unknown number of ballots are still uncounted from Election Day, due to the reported failure of 128 precincts to submit their vote totals. However, clicking through the summary report on a race to precincts reveals the shortfall is actually a coding/categorizing artifact, not necessarily an actual precinct actually holding onto ballot boxes.

Virginia creates four dummy accounting “precincts” for each county. These are:

-#AB: central absentee precinct results from mailed absentee ballots processed through Election Day.
-#EV: central absentee precinct results from in-person early voting.
-#PE: central absentee precinct results from mailed absentee ballots received by the deadline and processed after Election Day.

-##: provisional.

So, you can get 0% reporting when no provisional ballots are cast in a precinct. Furthermore, you would expect, as a matter of law and definition, that the #PE “precinct” will not be reported until after noon, Nov. 15. That is the state deadline for receiving a ballot postmarked by Election Day. However, we already know that #PE is equal to or less than 75,477, the number of absentee ballots still not returned.

So, there is no physical way to steal the election at this point. Furthermore, there is no way, with the actual outstanding ballots, for a Dewey Beats Truman moment. The voters of Virginia rose up, voted hard and watched the polling places closely, and now Youngkin, Winsome Sears, and Jason Miyares will try to rescue Virginia.

Published in Elections
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

There are 26 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. RightAngles Member
    RightAngles
    @RightAngles

    Hmmm, so then,  “Parents have no say regarding their children and if they object they’re terrorists” wasn’t a good campaign slogan?

    • #1
  2. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Hmmm, so then, “Parents have no say regarding their children and if they object they’re terrorists” wasn’t a good campaign slogan?

    Only among government people, and not even all of them. 

    • #2
  3. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Hmmm, so then, “Parents have no say regarding their children and if they object they’re terrorists” wasn’t a good campaign slogan?

    Only among government people, and not even all of them.

    Exactly so.

    • #3
  4. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    I have been disappointed with many comments on previous threads where doomsdayers were claiming that Republicans will never win an election again because the whole voting system is rigged.  I hope this changes their minds.  Republicans won in in all three state-wide offices and even flipped the legislature in their favor in a Blue State, where Democrats controlled the election apparatus.

    • #4
  5. Chris Williamson Member
    Chris Williamson
    @ChrisWilliamson

    This editor from the New York Times thinks monitoring campaign integrity is just a partisan effort.

    “Speaking of election fraud, Republicans have been strangely quiet on the topic this time around. Interesting how that works: When a Democrat wins, it’s ipso facto proof of fraud. When a Republican wins — presto! — the election is on the level. This is how so many top Republicans managed to keep a straight face in 2020 as they argued that votes for Mr. Biden were fraudulent even while votes for winning Republican candidates farther down the same ballot were magically untainted.” – https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/03/opinion/virgina-election-mcauliffe-democrats-concede.html

    The point of the opinion piece is to point out those Democrats who gracefully conceded, including Mrs. Clinton’s concession in 2016. But then, maybe he’s writing for the paying subscribers….

    • #5
  6. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Steven Seward (View Comment):

    I have been disappointed with many comments on previous threads where doomsdayers were claiming that Republicans will never win an election again because the whole voting system is rigged. I hope this changes their minds. Republicans won in in all three state-wide offices and even flipped the legislature in their favor in a Blue State, where Democrats controlled the election apparatus.

    I was one of the doomsayers, and I’m changing my attitude for two reasons. First, it seems that my adopted home state of Virginia, where my daughter and I spent five years working as election officials, wasn’t completely corrupted in spite of passing the law eliminating photo ID to vote. Second, three ballot initiatives in my true home state of New York that would have teed up the classic Democratic vote stealing devices, failed and failed massively, indicating that there must have been a substantial Democrat “no” vote from my fellow New Yorkers. No ballot harvesting, no automatic mailing of an absentee ballot to every registered voter, and no two-week extension of the deadline for certifying the election. Mailing out millions of blank ballots provides an untraceable source of ready votes when the Democrat needs them, and extending the deadline gives them plenty of time to see how many votes they need.

    Believe me, I did and do not enjoy being a doomsayer. I volunteered to be an election judge after reading “If It’s Not Close, They Can’t Cheat” by Hugh Hewitt. As soon as Valerie was old enough she volunteered and we trained and worked together. The culmination for us was the Obama-Romney election where I was in charge of the polling place in the Frying Pan district of Fairfax County, and we processed 2100 votes without a hitch. Then she went off to college. Good times, and we both learned a lot from being in the trenches.

    I just finished listening to “Rigged” by Mollie Hemingway for the second time. It rewards re-reading and re-listening so you can get all the details down. In my opinion we need to do several important things. First is to prevent the Biden/Pelosi/Schumer gang from writing into law all the “temporary COVID” election changes that made it possible for them to steal the last presidential election. Second, we need to work on states where cheat-enabling laws and court decisions have been passed. I hope that Virginia and New York will be OK for a while, since Republicans took a majority in the House of Delegates in VA and the Representatives in NY.

    • #6
  7. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Chris Williamson (View Comment):

    This editor from the New York Times thinks monitoring campaign integrity is just a partisan effort.

    “Speaking of election fraud, Republicans have been strangely quiet on the topic this time around. Interesting how that works: When a Democrat wins, it’s ipso facto proof of fraud. When a Republican wins — presto! — the election is on the level. This is how so many top Republicans managed to keep a straight face in 2020 as they argued that votes for Mr. Biden were fraudulent even while votes for winning Republican candidates farther down the same ballot were magically untainted.” – https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/03/opinion/virgina-election-mcauliffe-democrats-concede.html

    The point of the opinion piece is to point out those Democrats who gracefully conceded, including Mrs. Clinton’s concession in 2016. But then, maybe he’s writing for the paying subscribers….

    Funny how when a Democrat wins, “democracy depends on the consent of the losing side,” but when a Republican wins, “dissent is the highest form of democracy.” These people act as though we have no memory. I guess this is a result of moral relativism. If there is no absolute truth, then whatever works at the moment is true.

    • #7
  8. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Hmmm, so then, “Parents have no say regarding their children and if they object they’re terrorists” wasn’t a good campaign slogan?

    Gosh it is really good to hear from you!  You have been missed.

    • #8
  9. Steven Seward Member
    Steven Seward
    @StevenSeward

    Douglas Pratt (View Comment):

    I was one of the doomsayers, and I’m changing my attitude for two reasons. First, it seems that my adopted home state of Virginia, where my daughter and I spent five years working as election officials, wasn’t completely corrupted in spite of passing the law eliminating photo ID to vote. Second, three ballot initiatives in my true home state of New York that would have teed up the classic Democratic vote stealing devices, failed and failed massively, indicating that there must have been a substantial Democrat “no” vote from my fellow New Yorkers. No ballot harvesting, no automatic mailing of an absentee ballot to every registered voter, and no two-week extension of the deadline for certifying the election. Mailing out millions of blank ballots provides an untraceable source of ready votes when the Democrat needs them, and extending the deadline gives them plenty of time to see how many votes they need.

    Believe me, I did and do not enjoy being a doomsayer. I volunteered to be an election judge after reading “If It’s Not Close, They Can’t Cheat” by Hugh Hewitt. As soon as Valerie was old enough she volunteered and we trained and worked together. The culmination for us was the Obama-Romney election where I was in charge of the polling place in the Frying Pan district of Fairfax County, and we processed 2100 votes without a hitch. Then she went off to college. Good times, and we both learned a lot from being in the trenches.

    I just finished listening to “Rigged” by Mollie Hemingway for the second time. It rewards re-reading and re-listening so you can get all the details down. In my opinion we need to do several important things. First is to prevent the Biden/Pelosi/Schumer gang from writing into law all the “temporary COVID” election changes that made it possible for them to steal the last presidential election. Second, we need to work on states where cheat-enabling laws and court decisions have been passed. I hope that Virginia and New York will be OK for a while, since Republicans took a majority in the House of Delegates in VA and the Representatives in NY.

    Thanks for the insights, and the info on New York.  My wife and I worked the polls a few times, too.  I would say that poll worker incompetence might have accounted for about 1 or 2 percent of votes not being counted at all.   That is a different issue than fraud.  Of course I was working in liberal districts where the voters and other poll workers were greater than 90% democrat.

    • #9
  10. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Steven Seward (View Comment):

    Thanks for the insights, and the info on New York. My wife and I worked the polls a few times, too. I would say that poll worker incompetence might have accounted for about 1 or 2 percent of votes not being counted at all. That is a different issue than fraud. Of course I was working in liberal districts where the voters and other poll workers were greater than 90% democrat.

    Fairfax County was pretty Democrat in those days, and in fact my polling place went for Obama. We still provided a clean count. It helped that Valerie and I had worked as ordinary worker-bees in primaries and regular elections for four years before I was tapped to be chief judge. I was nervous. I had nightmares about getting arrested for screwing up.

    One thing I noticed was that the Democrats had a lawyer at the polling place the entire time, and the Republican lawyer showed up four times during the day and only stayed 10 minutes. It wasn’t until I read Hemingway’s book I found out why. There was a ruling by a Federal judge restricting Republican attorneys as poll watchers, that only expired three years after the judge died so he couldn’t renew it.

    • #10
  11. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    Clifford, you and I are both Arizona lawyers.  How is Arizona doing on transparency?

    • #11
  12. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Clifford, you and I are both Arizona lawyers. How is Arizona doing on transparency?

    Gulp. I must have wandered into the wrong room.

    • #12
  13. Kozak Member
    Kozak
    @Kozak

    SSDD

    @hypocriteprofiles

    Project veritas exposes poll workers in NJ #politics #projectveritas #trump #biden #electionfraude #republican

    ♬ original sound – HypocriteProfiles

    • #13
  14. Doug Watt Moderator
    Doug Watt
    @DougWatt

    One thing that should be changed in Virginia is following the Oregon model on vote by mail. Ballots must be received by the times the polls close. Postmarks do not count, any ballot regardless of the postmark will not be counted if it was not received before the polls close.

    • #14
  15. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Chris Williamson (View Comment):
    The point of the opinion piece is to point out those Democrats who gracefully conceded, including Mrs. Clinton’s concession in 2016.

    LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL

    Coffee right out my nose.

    • #15
  16. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Douglas Pratt (View Comment):

    I was one of the doomsayers, and I’m changing my attitude for two reasons.. . .

    I just finished listening to “Rigged” by Mollie Hemingway for the second time. It rewards re-reading and re-listening so you can get all the details down. In my opinion we need to do several important things. First is to prevent the Biden/Pelosi/Schumer gang from writing into law all the “temporary COVID” election changes that made it possible for them to steal the last presidential election. Second, we need to work on states where cheat-enabling laws and court decisions have been passed. I hope that Virginia and New York will be OK for a while, since Republicans took a majority in the House of Delegates in VA and the Representatives in NY.

    I am one of the doomsayers, and I won’t change my attitude, precisely because of what Doug wrote above. Until we get rid of sloppy voting laws that allow for fraud on a massive scale. My doomsaying is basically, sure Youngkin won, but that’s one race. The worst thing the Republican party can do right now is what the New York Times piece claims they’re doing: “See! Elections are fair! Nothing to worry about.”

    There’s plenty to worry about. There is still massive fraud everywhere. There was probably massive fraud in VA, just not enough. Even if there’s a Republican win, our voting system has to be fixed. No sitting back and relaxing on this.

    But I expect that’s just what Republicans will do.

    If that makes me a doomsayer, then doomsayer I’ll be.

    Don’t go wobbly because the GOP squeaked out a win in one gubernatorial race.

    • #16
  17. OldPhil Coolidge
    OldPhil
    @OldPhil

    Doug Watt (View Comment):

    One thing that should be changed in Virginia is following the Oregon model on vote by mail. Ballots must be received by the times the polls close. Postmarks do not count, any ballot regardless of the postmark will not be counted if it was not received before the polls close.

     I continue to rag on acquaintances who brag about going to vote early (in Virginia it started in early September). What if something happens, like the Terry McAuliffe “keep parents out of the schools” gaffe, that might change your mind? It’s too late baby, it’s too late.

    • #17
  18. Richard Easton Coolidge
    Richard Easton
    @RichardEaston

    Chris Williamson (View Comment):

    This editor from the New York Times thinks monitoring campaign integrity is just a partisan effort.

    “Speaking of election fraud, Republicans have been strangely quiet on the topic this time around. Interesting how that works: When a Democrat wins, it’s ipso facto proof of fraud. When a Republican wins — presto! — the election is on the level. This is how so many top Republicans managed to keep a straight face in 2020 as they argued that votes for Mr. Biden were fraudulent even while votes for winning Republican candidates farther down the same ballot were magically untainted.” – https://www.nytimes.com/2021/11/03/opinion/virgina-election-mcauliffe-democrats-concede.html

    The point of the opinion piece is to point out those Democrats who gracefully conceded, including Mrs. Clinton’s concession in 2016. But then, maybe he’s writing for the paying subscribers….

    Surprise! Wisconsin didn’t follow the law last year.

    https://thefederalist.com/2021/11/04/audit-wisconsin-could-have-counted-enough-illegal-votes-to-tip-the-2020-election-to-biden/

    • #18
  19. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Richard Easton (View Comment):

    Surprise! Wisconsin didn’t follow the law last year.

    https://thefederalist.com/2021/11/04/audit-wisconsin-could-have-counted-enough-illegal-votes-to-tip-the-2020-election-to-biden/

    No surprise at all to me.

    • #19
  20. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    And this is why I’m still a doomsayer. This crap still happens:

    • #20
  21. Gary Robbins Reagan
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    Doug Watt (View Comment):

    One thing that should be changed in Virginia is following the Oregon model on vote by mail. Ballots must be received by the times the polls close. Postmarks do not count, any ballot regardless of the postmark will not be counted if it was not received before the polls close.

    I can live with that.  It is important for us to find reasonable compromises; this is very reasonable.

    • #21
  22. Kozak Member
    Kozak
    @Kozak

    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf (View Comment):

    Douglas Pratt (View Comment):

    I was one of the doomsayers, and I’m changing my attitude for two reasons.. . .

    I just finished listening to “Rigged” by Mollie Hemingway for the second time. It rewards re-reading and re-listening so you can get all the details down. In my opinion we need to do several important things. First is to prevent the Biden/Pelosi/Schumer gang from writing into law all the “temporary COVID” election changes that made it possible for them to steal the last presidential election. Second, we need to work on states where cheat-enabling laws and court decisions have been passed. I hope that Virginia and New York will be OK for a while, since Republicans took a majority in the House of Delegates in VA and the Representatives in NY.

    I am one of the doomsayers, and I won’t change my attitude, precisely because of what Doug wrote above. Until we get rid of sloppy voting laws that allow for fraud on a massive scale. My doomsaying is basically, sure Youngkin won, but that’s one race. The worst thing the Republican party can do right now is what the New York Times piece claims they’re doing: “See! Elections are fair! Nothing to worry about.”

    There’s plenty to worry about. There is still massive fraud everywhere. There was probably massive fraud in VA, just not enough. Even if there’s a Republican win, our voting system has to be fixed. No sitting back and relaxing on this.

    But I expect that’s just what Republicans will do.

    If that makes me a doomsayer, then doomsayer I’ll be.

    Don’t go wobbly because the GOP squeaked out a win in one gubernatorial race.

    In Presidential elections fraud anywhere is fraud everywhere.

    Right now a handful of Deep Blue Cities known for their massive corruption can swing a national election. Philadelphia, Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, Atlanta, Cleveland and St Louis are enough to tip the balance.

    • #22
  23. Columbo Member
    Columbo
    @Columbo

    RightAngles (View Comment):

    Hmmm, so then, “Parents have no say regarding their children and if they object they’re terrorists” wasn’t a good campaign slogan?

    So glad to see your smiling face and humorous commentary again Righty!

    • #23
  24. Nanocelt TheContrarian Member
    Nanocelt TheContrarian
    @NanoceltTheContrarian

    Steven Seward (View Comment):

    I have been disappointed with many comments on previous threads where doomsdayers were claiming that Republicans will never win an election again because the whole voting system is rigged. I hope this changes their minds. Republicans won in in all three state-wide offices and even flipped the legislature in their favor in a Blue State, where Democrats controlled the election apparatus.

    Actually, reports from Virginia do the opposite. There were reports of Democrats trying to get judges to change voting rules just before the election. Apparently they failed. Also there was the missed deadline in Fairfax on early vote counting. There were delays in reporting from Fairfax on vote totals. These are the age old tricks underpinning election fraud. It appears to me that the Democrats were supremely over confident of victory, in part because the momentum in the race didn’t start to shift until very late, particularly after McAuliffe’s truth telling about his views on parental input to their children’ education.  McAuliffe didn’t call in Marc Elias until very late in the day. Rather than convince me that Virginia’s election was clean and above board, I have the impression that Democrat’s seemed to fail at fraud only because they were too overconfident and reacted too late. I suspect McAuliffe felt that he had too much of a lead from early voting that had been going on for many weeks before the election, for Youngkin’s momentum to carry him to victory. Not fraud absence–fraud fail. Even the masters of election fraud can get over confident and blow it. 

    The actual answer to the question of fraud or no fraud will be answered by what comes next, and next after that, and so on. America is the land of election fraud, always has been, and likely always will be. Basically, even Chris Christy admits as much–and he should know if anyone does. The Democrats blew it massively in Virginia. Don’t expect them to not learn from the experience and improve their fraud game. Biden famously admitted, after all,  that he had assembled the greatest election fraud operation of all time. But even that can be improved on. 

    When they eliminate vote harvesting in California, I will start to think that America can improve regarding election fraud. 

    • #24
  25. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf (View Comment):

    And this is why I’m still a doomsayer. This crap still happens:

    So it continues.

    • #25
  26. Clifford A. Brown Contributor
    Clifford A. Brown
    @CliffordBrown

    Douglas Pratt (View Comment):

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    Clifford, you and I are both Arizona lawyers. How is Arizona doing on transparency?

    Gulp. I must have wandered into the wrong room.

    You don’t have to be a lawyer, or even have a law degree, to compare websites. Here is the AZ 2020 federal election page. Click around. You will not find a detailed level of accountability on absentee ballots.

    Compare this AZ page to this VA page. Look at this detailed accounting of the absentee ballots in VA, and note the absence of any such page on the AZ website, unless it is buried somewhere.

    The Virginia website is better for public trust and transparency. If you were worried about misuse of absentee ballots after Election Day to fix the race, you would see immediately if there were actually enough absentee ballots requested, in excess of the number already recorded as received by election officials, to change the Election Day result.

    • #26