America won

By | November 7, 2020

Yascha Mounk writes:

As president, Donald Trump has caused needless suffering on a staggering scale and subjected the country’s democratic institutions to their most serious test in more than a century. They survived that test. Joe Biden has narrowly defeated Trump, putting an end to the nightmare of the past four years.

A competent and humane administration is now preparing to enter the White House. Although the nation’s deep problems won’t vanish, the 46th president of the United States will undoubtedly work to tackle rather than downplay the danger still posed by the global pandemic, to improve rather than imperil the lives of immigrants and minorities, and to unite rather than divide Americans.

What does Biden’s victory mean?

In the early stages of the campaign, pundits wrote Biden off as an anachronism who had missed his moment. Born during World War II, he was sworn in as a United States senator in the same month that George Foreman won the world heavyweight boxing championship. Biden first tried, and failed, to become president when the Berlin Wall still stood tall and nearly half the Americans now alive were young children or not yet born. While his most recent Democratic predecessors, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, were elected to the highest office in the land as young men impatient to conquer the future, Biden will assume it as a kindly grandfather who seems nostalgic for a calmer past.

It turns out, however, that Biden is a man very much in tune with this historical moment—despite, or perhaps because of, his age and experience. [Continue reading…]

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