We have seen this movie before.

Recall Bush-Gore, circa 2000. A razor-thin margin in Florida. The emergence of “hanging chads.” A popular vote win for the challenger. Relentless media coverage. Claims of voter intimidation and fraud.

Repercussions began shortly after the final ballot was cast, including claims of a “stolen” election. Predictably, there was outrage from leaders of the civil rights industry (you might recall that cycle’s NAACP-sponsored television ad wherein George Bush was associated with the murder of James Byrd because he had failed to a support a “hate crimes” bill in Texas.)

The political environment turned ugly. No WMD was found in Iraq. A “Bush lied — people died” narrative was produced — including from members of Congress who had seen the pre-war intelligence and voted for the war. The rhetoric proved quite successful in degrading George W. Bush and delegitimizing the Bush presidency in the minds of some. It also paved the way for the anti-war Barack Obama to win the presidency.

Yet, all this seems like child’s play compared to the shenanigans that have followed the results of Nov. 8, 2016.

Indeed, it is difficult to imagine a more relentless character assault than the one we have witnessed since that historic day. (It has certainly placed the GOP establishment’s early, rather feeble campaign to degrade Trump and his movement in clearer perspective.)

The Democrats’ de-legitimization campaign began in earnest once Trump emerged as a serious contender for the GOP nomination. The central premise: “unfit” for high public office. Remarkably, Hillary Clinton thought to openly degrade her opponent’s supporters (“a basket of deplorables”). When Trump said he might not recognize the results of a “rigged” election — well, the “unfit” indictment went full-tilt.

Then came election night. Inaccurate exit polls were the first sign of trouble. Next, the “Blue Wall” began to crumble in Wisconsin. Said crumbling was followed by forlorn looks of disbelief from cable anchors not employed by Fox. Reality took a particularly ugly turn when Rust Belt districts that had twice voted for Obama came in “Trump.” This somehow was interpreted as latent racism — as though there had been a large secret migration of Klan supporters to the Midwest over the past four years.

It all came crashing down on Nov. 9. Street protests in major American cities. “Snowflake” college students demanding “cry-ins,” coloring books, therapy dogs and expanded “safe zones.” And who can forget Miley Cyrus with her tearful video to the world … followed by a chorus of whiny Hollywood types who always promise to leave the country, but never actually do.

Obama allows United Nations to condemn Israeli settlements

Also from the Washington Examiner

The U.S. did not go so far as to vote for the resolution, but allowed it to pass by abstaining from the vote.

12/23/16 2:30 PM

A new twist this time around were calls to end the Electoral College. The Democrats have won six of the last seven popular votes for president. Long term racial and ethnic trend lines favor them. Accordingly, party leaders now advocate for a popular vote format — all in order to stop those Republican rednecks in fly-over America from pulling one out every now and then. Per this revisionist view, any president taking office after losing the popular vote is by definition “illegitimate.”

And so it was no big surprise that a coalition of former Clinton supporters and a true believing contingent from the Green Party would attempt to fund recounts in key battleground states.

But this chapter in progressive revisionism was cut short when Russian hacking of DNC emails came to light. Now, the Left temporarily rediscovers the merits of the EC — and those electors who are not constitutionally mandated to vote according to the results of the popular vote in their states.

This storyline being that anyone who has had something positive to say about Vladimir Putin or Russia during a cycle wherein Russian operatives attempted to hack Democratic and Republican emails is “unfit” to be president.

Alas, this effort too was doomed from the beginning. The complainants did not produce one shred of evidence that Russian hacking impacted the actual vote. In fact, quite to the contrary, according to the 44th president of the United States. Still, another week or so of “unfit for office” indictments were thrown around for public consumption. Do not think for a second such a narrative will waste away in light of this week’s Electoral College vote.

Read Rand Paul's annual Festivus Airing of Grievances

Also from the Washington Examiner

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., took to Twitter for his annual #AiringofGrievances.

12/23/16 2:24 PM

Rather, we have just witnessed the beginning of what promises to be a relentless four-year campaign to delegitimize all things Trump — by whatever means available. A similar movie played to rave reviews on the left during the first years of the new millennium. It is what America’s progressive party seems to do best these days.

Gov. Robert Ehrlich is a Washington Examiner columnist, partner at King & Spalding and author of three books, including the recently released Turning Point. He was governor of Maryland from 2003 – 2007.

Obama allows United Nations to condemn Israeli settlements

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The U.S. did not go so far as to vote for the resolution, but allowed it to pass by abstaining from the vote.

12/23/16 2:30 PM

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