In a pretty amazing editorial, The Atlantic magazine—founded in 1857—endorsed Hillary Clinton. Only two other times in its long history has the magazine done such a thing. It preferred Abraham Lincoln in 1860 and Lyndon Johnson in 1964. You should read the entire piece for yourself, but I wanted to highlight one simple point the magazine’s editors made. Stating the obvious by calling Trump “the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American presidency,” and by calling him “a demagogue, a xenophobe, a sexist, a know-nothing, and a liar,” the editors then say,
He is spectacularly unfit for office, and voters—the statesmen and thinkers of the ballot box—should act in defense of American democracy and elect his opponent.
It certainly is overstating the case that American voters these days comprise “statesmen and thinkers.” Some are. Too many aren’t. But it is not overstating the case to suggest that a lot of what is at stake in this election has to do with defending American democracy, even if, paradoxically, it is defending it against a legion of angry and un- and ill-informed voters who think Donald Trump is the answer to America’s problems.
If you think I am being too rough on those angry low-information voters, watch the following five minute comedy piece—that isn’t all that funny when you think about it—produced for Samantha Bee’s “Full Frontal.” You won’t see any “statesmen and thinkers of the ballot box” in this segment, but you will see a very real threat to American democracy: the idea that our presidential election is “rigged.” Watch: