Brankin: This week is not going to be easy

No matter who prevails on Nov. 3, the foundation of the country is going to shake.

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Tara Brankin

The past four years have been, quite frankly, horrible. We have witnessed a global pandemic, uprisings and extreme economic hardship just within the past year. In addition, people are still dying in massive numbers as COVID-19 continues to ravage the United States, and the current administration is doing very little to stop it. Nov. 3 is Election Day, and the stakes could not be higher. No matter who wins, America is not going to be the same.

Trump has made it quite clear that he is not going to go down without a fight. If Biden wins, he may fully intend to declare a premature victory or fight the results in court — an attempt which would throw the country further into chaos. While there are plenty of Americans who do not support Trump, there are many who will become enraged if he loses.

According to the latest poll by the New York Times, Biden is up eight points nationally. Prior to the 2016 election, Americans would probably be fairly confident that Biden would prevail on Election Day with those numbers. However, Trump’s victory in 2016 changed everything. It has made many Americans, including myself, skeptical of polling accuracy. I am very worried about what will happen if the polls are as inaccurate now as they were in 2016.

Political polarization has spiked in recent decades and has been particularly highlighted since Trump became president. This, along with the turmoil of 2020, is a recipe for disaster. I think it is reasonable to expect violence and general animosity on both Election Day and the days that will follow, especially in Minneapolis, which is coming off of a summer of uprisings and protests that were, at times, violent.

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In Minneapolis, many voters are concerned about whether they will be subjected to an intimidation campaign at the polls on Nov. 3. This stems from the emergence of private security groups actively trying to recruit people, like Atlas Aegis, to intimidate voters at the polls under the guise of preventing violence and the looting of businesses.

It has been speculated that we will most likely not know the real victor of the election for days or even weeks. This puts additional stress on Americans who just want the election to be over with and figure out how to approach the next four years.

The anxiety I have faced in the past few weeks has been insurmountable. As someone who has always paid attention to politics and cares about the well-being of this country and the people who live here, every time I check the polls I hold my breath. But I have to accept that either outcome of the election will throw the country into chaos.

I can honestly say that I don’t know what is going to happen on Tuesday or how people will react. If 2020 has taught me anything, it’s that anything is possible, even if it seems too terrible to imagine. All I know is that we need to prepare for the worst over the next few days.

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