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2020 Election: Analysis Part 1 (with Francisco Pedraza)

In this episode, UCR Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Political Science Francisco Pedraza talks with students from the UC Riverside School of Public Policy about the 2020 election results. 

 
FEATURING Francisco Pedraza
NOVEMBER 13, 2020
37 MINUTES AND 44 SECONDS

In this episode, UCR Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Political Science Francisco Pedraza talks with students from the UC Riverside School of Public Policy about the 2020 election results.

About Francisco Pedraza:

Dr. Pedraza is a political scientist at the University of California, Riverside with appointments in the School of Public Policy and the Department of Political Science. His research centers on political attitude formation and political behavior, with a special emphasis on the attitudes and behaviors of racial and ethnic minorities in the United States.

Learn more about Francisco Pedraza via https://profiles.ucr.edu/app/home/profile/fpedraza.

 

Podcast Highlights:

“It is hard to see a victory for those electoral college votes in [Arizona and Florida] happening without the Latino vote.”

-       Francisco Pedraza on the topic of voting blocks that influenced the results of this election.

“Political science literature on electoral and campaign outcomes, rule number one, is that incumbency is a huge advantage.”

-       Francisco Pedraza on the topic of why the presidency turned blue, but Congress and state elections are leaning red.

“We know that the norms and the expectations of making a concession speech and calling on all of your supporters to accept the loss is crucial.”

-       Francisco Pedraza on the topic of a smooth transition of power leading up to January 20th 2021.

Guest:

Francisco Pedraza

Interviewers:

Maddie Bunting (UCR Public Policy Major, Dean’s Chief Ambassador)

Arleth Flores Aparicio (UCR Public Policy Major, Dean’s Ambassador)

Music by:

C Codaine

https://freemusicarchive.org/music/Xylo-Ziko/Minimal_1625

https://freemusicarchive.org/music/Xylo-Ziko/Phase

This is a production of the UCR School of Public Policy: https://spp.ucr.edu/

Subscribe to this podcast so you don’t miss an episode. Learn more about the series and other episodes via https://spp.ucr.edu/podcast.

Commercial Links:

Derick Brinkerhoff Seminar

COVID-19 Panel

mpp.ucr.edu

Related Podcast Episodes and Webinars:

2020 Election: Voting By Mail (with Bob Page)

2020 Election: Who is Voting and Why?

Election Panel

Transcription

  • 2020 Election: Analysis Part 1 (with Francisco Pedraza)

    Introduction: Welcome to Policy Chats, the official podcast of the School of Public Policy at the University of California, Riverside. I’m your host, Maddie Bunting. Join me and my classmates as we learn about potential policy solutions for today’s biggest societal challenges. 

     

    Joining us today is Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Political Science, Dr. Francisco Pedraza. My fellow classmate, Arleth Flores Aparicio, and I chatted with him about the current results of the 2020 election. 

     

    Maddie Bunting: Dr. Pedraza, you are an Assistant Professor of Public Policy and Political Science at the University of California, Riverside. Can you compare and contrast the 2016 election to this year's election in terms of civic engagement? 

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: Yes, I'm gonna give you the simple answer and then I'm going to unpack that and show why it is a little bit complicated and we should dig more. So the simple answer is that compared to the 2016 election, we saw historical unprecedented levels of turnout in the 2020 election. Way more people turned out and participated in 2020. And in some cases, what was especially impressive, was that early voting in about 30 states, by the time early voting had finished up and before election day, before the first Tuesday in November, about 30 states had met 90% or more. Several states that actually exceeded it. Probably the one that stood out the most was Texas, exceeded their total turnout from 2016. Which is fairly impressive because it tells us a little bit about just how much people were enthused and wanted to participate in this election. That the complex part of this, right, is that we should keep in mind two things: One was, this was an election unlike any other. It took place in the context of a pandemic. Participating this time met a real risk exposing yourself to COVID-19. With that reason, you might have initially thought that people would feel reluctant to participate in politics, that for safety reasons they might be a little more comfortable just saying, I'm gonna go ahead and pass. But we didn't see that. In fact, we saw the exact opposite. People were extra, mobilized, extra enthused. And I think that's an important thing to keep in mind, had there been no pandemic, we might have even seen more turnout. We may never know. The other thing to keep in mind is that there was a tremendous amount of confusion and question mark that was hanging over voting. Voting in general, but in particular, absentee styles of voting. And that can be traced in large part to some of the comments that President Trump had made in the summer and that he ramped up again in the fall, and right up until the run of election day. Yet we still saw extraordinary levels of civic engagement. I think the history books are going to write this 2020 election and turn out and participation in politics as extraordinary and that it's going to go in the history books as being an example of major investments, in especially communities and slices of the electorate that we typically think of as very unlikely to participate. We saw lots and lots and lots of new turnout. And I'll put another fine point on one other aspect and that's every single election cycle At least one of the candidates says, “Oh, I'm seeing that there's some high interest among youth voters”. And pretty much every election cycle that kinda gets disappointed. But this time may be different. This time the youth vote was actually extraordinary. It was incredible. And we’ll of course dig into this a little bit more as we get more and more data and the final election returns, gets sewn up and reported. But by all accounts it's looking like this really was a distinct year. That up and down the age category, we saw lots and lots of people participating, but that it was really, really impressive. Among those voters who were aged 18 to 29, many of whom were voting for the very first time in their lives. 

     

    Arleth Flores Aparicio: Yeah, I think especially when you talk about the youth vote, I know research that you have done, especially talking about that specific topic. It's incredible. The numbers, and I hope people really realized that the youth is going to come back, hopefully stronger in the next cycle. But kind of getting into that idea, so political science follows trends and the 21st century has so far proven to be different in the past. In your opinion, what will the future of politics look like? 

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: Well, what we've got, that's a big question. There's going to be one thing that sets political campaigns and political operations moving forward that will set it apart from what we saw, for example, in the 20th century. And by the way, there's a lot of clues that this is already happening, it’s just getting vamped up. Number one, the amount of campaigning and outreach and messaging and infrastructure built around digital operations is going to continue building. Now, we might have seen that that was extra in 2020 given the COVID-19 pandemic. But it's also clearly the case that there's a huge slice of the electorate that is responding and attentive to politics on their phone. And for a lot of people, it just makes it easier, it makes sense and it's much easier to engage in civics with little bites at a time, right? So if you can't make the one hour meeting with your local organization in person, even after the pandemic ends, but you can engage, say, question and common answer or reply or like or retweet or that you're going to see that level and that kind of contribution to the public discourse, it will be sustained, it will continue. And we've also got this really interesting phenomenon, right, where the newest voters in the electorate are also replacing those that we'll call “Veterans”. The more seasoned voters who eventually will, put it euphemistically, exit the electorate and their social media literacy and digital literacy means that the overall level of comfort with engaging in social media and the comfort in launching very serious political operations that emphasize digital media that's going to go up. So you'll have definitely a need to have the classic kinds of calls for political mobilization. But it's going to be, it's going to be in a digital era. Now, that's all campaign stuff. But even with that, my own colleague Kevin Esterling, and the School of Public Policy has been working closely with a team of scholars to think carefully about how we can stay true to the things that democracy demands, especially the relationship between people that we elect to public office. Those public officials have to have some kind of relationship with their constituents. And it's increasingly the case that we're missing out on opportunities to sustain that kind of relationship by taking advantage of digital tools and social media platforms, as well as just retooling the way that constituents and elected officials engage. We have in effect a system of governance that dates back to an agrarian era in America. And it's outdated and we need to update that. And so moving forward in the 20th century, I think you're going to see more of that. Not just on the campaign side, but also on the governance side.

     

    Commercial, Maddie Bunting: Experts in public health, education, and labor talk about COVID impacts, responses, and recommendations on November 19th at 3pm. Learn more about this event hosted by the UCR School of Public Policy at spp.ucr.edu. You can also find the RSVP link in our show notes. 

     

    Arleth Flores Aparicio: Many have criticized polls for not portraying accurate results. And I know that political sciences rely heavily on surveys and polls for their research. Do you see the use of polls and surveys continuing in the near future even if there is a lack of trust in the public? 

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: Yeah, polls are tools. I encourage your listeners to think about tools as being useful, more or less useful in some cases than others. So when it comes to predicting the exact outcome of an election contest, polls are not really designed to do that. What they are better designed to do is to give us a sense of the direction. And on that count, the poll did tell us that at the national level, for example, in 2016, that there was an expectation that there was greater support for Hillary Clinton than there was for Donald Trump. We know the outcome, and we should keep in mind that the national vote, that is the popular vote, is not what determines who the victor is in the White House, that hasn't changed. In 2020, we again saw, and this time by a greater margin, that most American voters favor Joe Biden and Kamala Harris ticket over the Trump Pence ticket. The difference is that this broke down into a very different outcome when you started breaking it down state-by-state and the Electoral College tipped in favor of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. So the polls, we knew going into 2020, we should pay very close attention to state-level polls. And that meant being very, very focused on getting high-quality representative samples within each state. We saw way more polling within states this round than we saw in 2016. Still having said that, when the polls predict, especially in the battleground states, that it is going to be a close election. They're not designed to tell us, well, we think it's going to be a contest that comes down to 1,000 votes or even 10 thousand votes. They have what we call confidence intervals around those estimates and we may get it right, we may get it wrong. Now having said that, another thing to keep in mind is that while we're praising this shift and encouraging more engagement with digital resources and digital tools, we also have to keep in mind that as a result of more and more people using cell phones, and more and more people feeling comfortable engaging in dialogue on social media platforms as opposed to, for example, making calls. I've seen these memes that talk about how Gen Z rolls their eyes or gives somebody the side-eye when they try to call them. They're like “Why are you calling me? Send me a text!”. And I think that's important to think about because the only way that we can take, if we continue trying to deploy public opinion polls that rely on landlines, for example, we're going to miss a huge slice of the electorate. If we continue to try to engage folks by phone, whether that's their landline and or their cell phone and it's, you know, 20-30 minute questionnaires. That's gonna get tough, right? To sustain their attention. And then finally, the other thing that we need to keep in mind, is that there's a whole lot of folks who just feel better and more comfortable taking a survey online at their leisure when they have time. And pollsters are getting better and better about doing that, but they haven't quite nailed it. And so to give the pollsters credit and sort of wrap up, my response to this is that polling is going to be increasingly difficult in the 21st century. And so we shouldn't expect that polling will necessarily improve even in the next election cycle. I think it may actually get worse before it gets better.

     

    Maddie Bunting: Very interesting. Thank you. Yeah, I know polling, it's something I think it's I think maybe the common American doesn't understand how it works. And I know conversations in some of my classes that kids would go, “Has anyone here been polled? I haven't been polled and my friends haven't been polled, who's getting polled?”. So I think there's a lot of questions around it. So thank you for clarifying some of them. And you know, it's not a perfect science and it relies on human response. And there is, there can be bias from that. So thank you for that. I would love to talk about some of these voting blocks that people have polled. And 55% of white women voted for Trump this year. Black and Latinx communities have been praised for showing up in large numbers in Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and various other states. Can you speak to the importance of these communities and how these voting blocks have the power to steer an election?

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: That's right. So the narrative that we're seeing right now unfold has quite a bit at stake. Before I talk about what the actual facts are on the ground, I want to just underscore one point about why it's important to have this discourse and what some of the folks who are contributing feel is at stake determining, well, who should we give credit to when it comes to, for example, the Biden Harris ticket being the next administration. And what's at stake is really simple. It's that at some point, the campaign operation will have to transmission into a government operation. And they're going to have to make choices about, well, which issues should be addressed? Which issues should we prioritize? Who’s concerns should we elevate this half? And that is hard to do without taking into consideration who helped get me here in the first place. And so that's part of what's at stake here. When you see, for example, a narrative that says the Latino vote, I'm really surprised to see that so many Latinos voted for the Trump ticket. It just seems counterintuitive given the position that the Trump administration had on, for example, immigration or what we've known regarding the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on black and brown communities and black and brown bodies. Given that as sort of the background, people may have been surprised to see that in South Florida, a majority of Latinos voted to support Trump. Or that in parts of the Rio Grande Valley in Texas, that we saw Joe Biden lose somewhere in the range of eight to ten percentage points that support from the Latino community relative to what Hillary Clinton earned in 2016. Having said that, we should keep some things in mind. Cuban Americans in southern Florida make up about 3% of the entire Latino population. So one thing that we might wanna do is pay attention to what the patterns were for the other 97% of Latinos. Same goes in Texas, right? 15% of all Latinos, perhaps just slightly less, are concentrated in the Rio Grande Valley. When you pay and shift attention over to the way that Latinos voted, say in Houston and Dallas and San Antonio and Austin area. These other major metropolitan areas of that stage show that Latinos were in support of Biden Harris, to the tune of upwards around 75% of their vote. So that once you start to unpack it, you feel like there's more to dig into, but we should not let that small slice of the overall pattern here dictate how we understand it. Now I also want to acknowledge that we can't think about the way that Biden and Harris got their victory without acknowledging and giving due credit to the incredible investments that came in the form of grassroots, non-profits organizations putting in the time and the people and the resources going years back. This wasn't something that just started in 2020. This date all the way back to 2016, and in some cases, even before. One name that has probably caught your attention, we've seen a lot of headlines, is the operation that Stacey Abrams out of Georgia spearheaded. It turns out that when you dig a little bit deeper, you learn that Stacey Abrams had a plan to quote unquote “Turn Georgia Blue” that dated all the way back to 2012. So she had a vision years ago, two presidential cycles ago, right? That Georgia had the capacity to turn blue. She was probably laughed out of the room in 2012. She ran for governor and she lost in Georgia. And yet she kept going, right? And so the kinds of investments that turn out low propensity voters and voters that we know are eligible that aren't participating. This gives sort of credence and evidence that it can make a difference. That you take that operation and you see it implemented in perhaps even smaller scales in key cities like Detroit, Michigan, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Phoenix, Arizona. And you start to see the makings of a real coordinated effort to tip the balance. One thing that I'll point out here is that you point out that 55% of white women voted for Trump this year. Well, they actually are replicating the pattern that we saw in 2016, right? So the majority of white women voted for Donald Trump in 2016 and they did it again in 2020. And some of the critique that has come up about that is that, well, it gives us more information about someone's willingness to tolerate Donald Trump and the kinds of policy moves that he made during his administration. Because you could sort of say in 2016, well, we didn't know that he was going to be like this. But now after seeing four years in office, it's really hard to use that sort of an explanation right. Now you knew full well what he was about and you knew full well what his administration was capable of and so they still supported them. It really leaves sort of a cloud over how should we understand the willingness to, and it's not just any one thing, but it's the willingness to deploy a Muslim ban. It's a willingness to cage childrens, to separate them from their families. A willingness to interpret real social strife in the streets around Black Lives Matter movement as a “both sides” type of issue. We've gotten good people on both sides. Not to mention a whole host of other issues related to the pandemic and our response and how very clearly the U.S. has stood out compared to other  nations as unable and really flubbing the response to a pandemic that we might have sort of assumed, Of course we could get this under control and probably even way better in model for other nations what the response should be like, it's been in fact the exact opposite. And so having known all that among a bunch of other issues that you still supported Trump, I think it makes it harder it makes it harder to explain that, well, it's because I didn't know what he was capable of. Then finally, the other thing that I want to point out here is you asked specifically about Black and Latino communities and praise for showing up in large numbers in Arizona, Florida, Georgia. That's exactly right. When you do the calculations, not just the numbers that turned out, but then how they break out. It's hard to see a victory for those electoral college votes in those specific states happening without the Latino vote. And I would also add without the help of other organizations as well. So in Arizona, one really neat analysis that has been making them around from the social media networks is the Navajo vote. And when you look at the breakdown of the Navajo vote it's upwards of 80 to 90% on top was record turnout. And that added up to over, I think, 70 or 80 thousand votes without which the Biden victory in Arizona would not have been procured. And so there's another claim I think that you're going to see appear from Native American communities say, “We were key here. This made a difference. Until when we talk about crafting the policy agenda moving forward in Arizona at the national level. Don't forget about us”.

     

    Commercial, Maddie Bunting: Experts in public health, education, and labor talk about COVID impacts, responses, and recommendations on November 19th at 3pm. Learn more about this event hosted by the UCR School of Public Policy at spp.ucr.edu. You can also find the RSVP link in our show notes. 

     

    Arleth Flores Aparicio: Thank you Professor Pedraza for bringing out especially about specific people. I feel like they get forgotten. And I also want to say thank you about bringing up the topic about Stacey Abrams in Georgia. And talking about Georgia, as many of you know, like there's a runoff in Georgia for both their Senate seats. In North Carolina and Alaska remain uncalled, both are leading red. The House of Representatives are still controlled by Democrats, yet Republicans did pick up a significant amount of seats. 11 states held elections for the rules of governor, and seven went to Republicans. So bringing all those stats, in your opinion, what does it mean that, while Democrats had won the presidential race in both Congress and gubernatorial races, democrats need to see a wave of blue?

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: So if you only looked at the polls and you paid attention to a lot of the optimists they predicted a blue wave. That's exactly right. And here's what I think they didn't keep in mind. Number one, the classic political science literature on electoral campaign outcomes, rule number one is that incumbency is a huge advantage. So the fact that the incumbent at the top of the ticket didn't win is huge! It also means that you had to have a very disciplined and sophisticated campaign operation that would not lose focus and stay very, very much on track to only invest resources, personnel, messaging, media ad campaign buys, in those key battleground states. So sorry to say, but California just was never going to get the level of investment that say Arizona, or Wisconsin or Michigan, or even Florida were going to get because that's where the movement was most likely to happen. The predictions that there will be a blue wave and it would trickle down into other races. It's a bit short sided because it doesn't take into consideration a couple of things. Number one is that every race, it's sort of it's own race. And even if you can imagine a situation where the top of the ticket has quote unquote “coat tails” that would help lower ballot contests and candidates of the same party ride into victory. What you are forgetting right, is that there is incredible nuance and incredible complexity at the sub-national level. Everybody is running a distinct race, there's distinct issues happening. And so oftentimes it gets difficult to tie yourself up to the national ticket. And by the way, if you take into consideration that in some jurisdictions, it made sense to tie yourself to Donald Trump if you're Republican candidate. But in others, it made more sense to distance yourself. That additional complexity means that it was always going to be complicated and may not have made sense. You can imagine a very similar thing going on with respect to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. There were going to be some talks, for example, about how the presidential candidate for the Democratic Party was one of, I don't know how many did we start out with in Democratic primaries? There were dozens, and so not everybody felt like they were represented in Biden and not everybody felt like it was their guy. And even when Kamala Harris was selected by presidential candidate, there were a lot of folks, there was some hand-wringing that took place, right? They had preferred or they had hoped and had their fingers crossed that it was going to be somebody else. Setting aside that it too was historical for Joe Biden to select a woman candidate, right? And we've seen this before, but this is incredible and this is historical. To see a woman of color joining onto this ticket for the White House. And so I think we should keep that in mind when we think about the expectations of a blue wave, it sort of forgets those key factors that incumbents are hard to get out of office and there's a whole lot of incumbents on the table. And then two, tying this backup into the polls, sure, we'll have to peel back the evidence a little bit more, but there may have been some folks who might have felt uncomfortable saying exactly how they were going to go. There could also have been some sense of confusion, not at the top of the ticket, but maybe at the bottom and unsure about whether they were going to be willing to support them. We don't know just yet. What I will say though, is this: In the drama that unfolded on election night, and the week after, we got presented election results that made it feel like the Biden Harris ticket had mounted an incredible comeback. And to this day, we still see that playing out because there's some contests that are too close to call. And in the case of Georgia, there's still the runoff that's going to happen on January fifth. If somehow we could pack in all of the results, setting aside that runoff, but all the results that are associated with contests that had clear victors,eventually, on election night, it would have felt completely different. We wouldn't have felt like it was a comeback. We would've felt like, oh, it's looking like upward the 300 plus electoral votes for Biden Harris, we would be comfortably using words like Landslide, Mandate. But because it was presented in a way we were like, “Oh my gosh, this is the nail biter. We don't know how this is going to turn out!” It does make it feel like maybe there wasn't such a blue wave. 

     

    Commercial: Social injustice, health disparities, climate change. Are you interested in solving pressing challenges like these currently facing our region in the world? Then consider joining the next cohort of future policy leaders like me, by applying for the UCR Master of Public Policy program. Learn more at mpp.ucr.edu. You can also find the link in our show notes.

     

    Maddie Bunting: I've learned so much about state government because of the pandemic. But then also in this election where different states have different rules of when you can start counting. So I think to see, I mean, what stood out mainly to me, was Pennsylvania, you know, everyone was talking about Nevada. Why aren't they counting? What's going on? Why is the Court saying you have to stop counting? And I think that played a role of yes, in-person day of, you saw Trump supporters vote because he recommended don't vote by mail. Whereas Biden Harris were promoting vote early, vote by mail. And it was just twisted that people who voted early were being counted last. So I think it was a bit of a mind trick for everyone and yes, it took about five or six days. I'd love to get a little bit more into that top ticket. While Joe Biden and is currently the president elect, Trump and many Americans call this claim illegitimate. The Trump campaign has taken to the courts and called for recounts in many states, Georgia is already doing so. Can you give us a quick glance into what the next few weeks may look like as America attempts to confirm the next President of the United States?

     

    Dr. Francisco Pedraza: You're asking political scientists to forecast, and we are terrible about predicting the future just like anyone else. But I will say though is this, I'll say that we're in uncharted waters. And I urge us to take this seriously. If you saw these headlines and substituted the names of candidates and the country I think our readers would say, our listeners, would read that to mean that this is something that's out of whack with what we hold up to be a democracy. This would be authoritarian. That's why I think we should take it seriously. The problem, I think one thing that we should keep in mind with examples where a country transitioned or shifted from a democracy to an authoritarian regime, is that very early on when the evidence was suggestive that there could be a shift to an authoritarian regime, there is a whole lot of people who imagine and assume that there are institutions and checks and balances in place that will prevent that from happening. And that's the rub, the Constitution is just a piece of paper. And there's a whole lot of the way that our governance goes down that's actually built on norms. There is no constitutional writing or lettering or clause that says the loser of a contest must issue a concession by X number of days. Nothing. Nothing at all. There's also nothing in the Constitution that tells us specific examples of what is inappropriate misconduct in the presidential office. So even though there's an emollient clause and even though we can imagine what kind of things would violate that, we didn't take into consideration that could be something that's contested, that it would drag out with courts possibly so long as to exceed the time that the candidate actually is in office. We didn't think about those things and that is spelled out in any great detail in our Constitution. And as a result, it means that we're quite honestly not prepared. And the piece of paper to give us specific guidance. What it does mean is that people have to take action. If your assumption is, I can leave this on cruise control and somebody else will take care of it. To the extent that that represents a collective action problem And a 100 other million people are thinking the same way, That openS up the possibility for real abuse. And I think that's the point that I want to leave your listeners with. Trump claiming that absentee ballots are legitimate, by the way, there's no evidence of any voter fraud. The teams that had been deployed to go to court and Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Georgia, North Carolina, and wherever else are going have no evidence. Right now the argument boils down to basically, we want you to stop the counting over here, in these parts over here, but we want you to continue the counting over here. And we think that there's going to be some ballots that have been counted that shouldn't have been counted and we're going to bring you that evidence here, as soon as we find it. That's basically what the argument is. There is no, let me show you the Excel spreadsheet, and we flagged all the votes that are legitimate, that should not be counted. That hasn't been produced. But that's sort of besides the point, it's enough to muddy the water, to poison the well by saying, “I am the clear victor”. And then to have your lieutenants in the cabinet, speaking specifically about my Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State, announcing when asked in a press conference about the transition, basically dismisses it and actually states, he doubled down. And he said, “There's going to be a smooth transition into a second Trump administration”. If you had heard that from the mouth of a top official in another country, you would say, “This is an auto coup, this is a self coup”. And we're not going to mince words here, that's what it is. This is not appropriate. And yet here we are. A week, just a little bit more than a week since our election and we're really flirting with a problem for our democracy. And by the way, even if we get to January 20th and a minute after moon, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are sworn into the White House. Even if we get to that point, we haven't moved on because there are 70 million people who voted for Trump Pence. And they're consuming news and information at this very moment that cast doubt on the legitimacy of the election. And what you need for a democracy to function well is what our colleague in Political Science and now I think in the Grad division at UC Riverside, John Boyer, has written about called losers consent. It's this idea that there's nothing in the Constitution again that says you need to be a gracious loser. And yet we know that the norms and the expectations of making a concession speech and calling on all of your supporters to accept the loss is crucial. It's absolutely crucial because it diverts attention and energy away from shenanigans that would otherwise undermine our commitment to having a peaceful transition to power. And it feels surreal to have this conversation to be honest, because in my lifetime I never thought that I would in the United States of America, so far removed from the Civil War that we would ever have this conversation. And if this had come up during the Civil War. I'm sure people think like, well, yeah, that's why we're fighting. But here we're a century plus removed away from that, almost a 150 years, more than a 150 years removed from that great Civil War, that nearly tore this country apart. And we're potentially on a path where you get folks who do not accept the result and that can further muck up and rot and do a disservice to the sort of compliance and the consent that we give to be governed in our city, our county, our state. And we don't want that. That's not good. Not good for democracy. 


    Outro: We invite you to stay tuned in December where we continue analysis of the 2020 election. Policy Chats is a production of the UC Riverside, School of Public Policy. Our theme music was composed by C Codaine. I’m Maddie Bunting, ‘til next time.