Krugman: Trump's victory tainted and 'illegitimate'

If you’re looking for clear insight into the conventional wisdom of unhinged progressives, Paul Krugman is usually a safe bet. Today Krugman has a piece concluding the election was tainted and therefore Trump’s victory is illegitimate. From the NY Times:

Did the combination of Russian and F.B.I. intervention swing the election? Yes. Mrs. Clinton lost three states – Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania – by less than a percentage point, and Florida by only slightly more. If she had won any three of those states, she would be president-elect. Is there any reasonable doubt that Putin/Comey made the difference?

As I pointed out earlier, the fact that Trump won three swing-states by about 80,000 votes means you can point to almost anything and claim it made the difference. Did Putin hurt Hillary? Maybe. Did Comey? Probably. Did the media? Maybe? Did Bernie Sanders? Probably. Fake news? Maybe. Hillary’s hair styles? Possibly. Name a factor that could potentially swing 1% of the electorate in a handful of states and you have the cause of Hillary Clinton’s loss.

So this was a tainted election. It was not, as far as we can tell, stolen in the sense that votes were counted wrong, and the result won’t be overturned. But the result was nonetheless illegitimate in important ways; the victor was rejected by the public, and won the Electoral College only thanks to foreign intervention and grotesquely inappropriate, partisan behavior on the part of domestic law enforcement.

The victor was not rejected by the public. That’s why he’s the victor. The popular vote doesn’t matter, as everyone clearly understood before the votes were cast. Also, there’s a leap between saying Russian hacking hurt Hillary and saying Trump’s victory is illegitimate. The former is a possibility but the latter doesn’t necessarily follow. Unless Trump coordinated the hacking with Russia he’s not responsible for the actions of a hostile foreign power.

There’s also the uncomfortable fact that no one has claimed anything released by Wikileaks was false. In other words, the fact that the DNC was in the tank for Clinton and looking for opportunities to damage Sanders may have eventually hurt her at the polls (by discouraging Sanders supporters from falling in line) but only because those voters had their suspicions about the DNC confirmed. As I’ve argued before, what Krugman is saying boils down to: ‘If only we’d been able to hide our bias and misbehavior from our own voters, we’d have won!’ That may be true but it’s not much of a recommendation for Hillary.

As for Comey’s actions it’s worth pointing out that Krugman jumped into full conspiracy theory mode he moment Comey announced that he was examining more of Clinton’s emails:

There is a simpler explanation. Comey testified before Congress that the investigation was over. He says he felt obligated to let Congress know when it suddenly turned out, through the unexpected discovery of emails on Anthony Weiner’s laptop, that it wasn’t over. As with DNC emails, Krugman’s concern is that voters were getting too much truthful information. After calling Trump “the Siberian candidate,” Krugman recommends Democrats stoke their own anger for his entire tenure:

Politics being what it is, moral backbones on Capitol Hill will be stiffened if there are clear signs that the public is outraged by what is happening…

Personally, I’m still figuring out how to keep my anger simmering — letting it boil over won’t do any good, but it shouldn’t be allowed to cool. This election was an outrage, and we should never forget it.

So there it is. Krugman says Trump’s victory is illegitimate and recommends Democrats stay angry. Seems to me it was just a few years ago when stoking public anger at the President and suggesting he was illegitimate was considered a bad thing. I guess times have changed.