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Sunday, November 1, 2020

US Elections .. .. .. did Joe Biden forget the name of the President ?!?!

A few decades ago ~ elections in Tamil Nadu were different.  Before you read further – Thiru : A Subbarayalu; Panagal Raja; Dr P Subbarayan; P Munuswamy Naidu,  Ramakrishna Ranga Rao(Raja of Bobbili), PT Rajan,   Kurma Venkata Reddy Naidu, C Rajagopalachari [Rajaji], Tanguturi Prakasam &   O P Ramaswamy Reddiyar – were the Chief Ministers of Tamil Nadu prior to Indepedence and general elections in free India.

Remember in my younger days there would be public meetings at street corners, cycle rallies, candidate canvassing in open jeeps and some orators reeling out statistics and qualities of the candidate on the mike in auto rickshaw (I myself have spoken on that mike traversing the electoral village consisting of many a streets).  For every candidate, election manager, campaigner, speakers – good oratorical skills, eloquence, knowledge of the area, candidate, capabilities of the party and more were required .. .. (perhaps not any longer !) – remember what could happen if the candidate makes a guffaw in calling wrongly the name of Chief Minister himself ! – for sure, he would become object of ridicule.

Miles away, US elections are on the anvil.  The American presidential elections are always held on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Americans vote for people called "electors" in their state who are supporting the candidate they want to become president - this process is called the electoral college. The more people who live in a state, the more electors there are for that state. So California for example, with a population of 38.8 million, has 55 votes - while Delaware, (population 936,000), has just three votes. There are currently 538 electors in total, corresponding to the 435 Representatives (Congress men and women) and 100 Senators, plus the three additional electors from the District of Columbia. The Constitution prohibits any federal official, elected or appointed, from being an elector. The candidate with the most electors wins all the state's electoral college votes and the first candidate to win enough states to get to 270 electoral votes is elected to that office.

The 2020 US election is a week away. With the presidential debates over, we are into the final days of campaigning. But the coronavirus pandemic has thrown many aspects of the race into uncertainty. The virus has already dramatically affected the running of the election, including the chaos caused by Donald Trump being diagnosed with Covid-19. It is also unclear what election day itself will look like, given the risk of catching the virus by voting in person. A record number of people are expected to vote before November 3 by opting for postal votes. Election experts suggest this could mean the result may not be declared on election night, but may take several days - or even weeks - to emerge.   With the coronavirus pandemic expected to impact public life well into the autumn, the 2020 election is likely to go down in history as one of the most unconventional US presidential races ever held.

Media reports may not be conclusive in saying whether it would be Joe Biden or  Donald Trump in the national polls for the presidential election.  The leads as shown in the Press any way  doesn’t guarantee the candidate’s  victory. Hillary Clinton also had a clear lead over Trump in the polls for almost the entire 2016 campaign. She ended up losing in the electoral college. Because the presidential voting system assigns each state a number of electoral college votes, which go to the state’s victor regardless of the margin of victory, a handful of swing states will probably decide the election and be targeted heavily by campaigners.

In order to track how the race is developing in the areas that could decide the election, six of the eight states we focused on were those that flipped to Trump in 2016 after backing Barack Obama in 2012. Arizona and North Carolina were also added due to what they might tell us about a shifting electoral landscape – they could emerge as vital new swing states this year.

Donald Trump has mocked 'Sleepy' Joe Biden for apparently forgetting who was president after the Democrat candidate said 'we need to stop four more years of George.'  Biden was addressing a virtual concert when he said: 'Four more years of George, er, George, er, he - we're going to find ourselves in a position where, if Trump gets elected, we're going to be in a different world.' The 77-year-old appeared to receive a prompt from his wife Jill who was sitting beside him, muttering 'Trump' under her breath.

Hours later President Trump blasted Biden, tweeting: 'Joe Biden called me George yesterday. Couldn't remember my name. Got some help from the anchor to get him through the interview. The Fake News Cartel is working overtime to cover it up!' Many speculated that Biden was thinking of George W. Bush, president from 2001-09, or perhaps George H.W. who was in office from 1989-93.  Democrats however said that Biden was speaking to George Lopez, one of the hosts of the rally.  The blunder once again was used by Republicans to raise questions about Biden's mental capacity - a topic Trump has repeatedly referenced in the run-up to the election.  

Interesting ! 

With regards – S. Sampathkumar


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