I regret to inform you that Your Candidate is going to lose. Some tough days are ahead. I’m sorry.
It will be tempting to blame Your Candidate for his loss, but the truth is that he actually did a pretty good job. The economy, world affairs, the weather – they just didn’t go his way. Still, he made the most of the hand he was dealt, gave some good speeches, got in some good lines in what were the best presidential debates in a long time. Your Candidate was the best candidate Your Party had, and he gave The Other Guy a pretty good run for his money.
The Other Guy will be in the White House for the next four years, but there’s nothing mysterious about his victory. There was no grand conspiracy, no nefarious manipulation of the voting process that thwarted the will of the people. The Other Guy will be president because that’s how the votes in the American electoral system tallied up. To the extent that you are an American, the Other Guy will be your president for the next four years. I know you don’t like to hear it, but sometimes you have to face bad news head on. Your Candidate and The Other Guy represented different sets of values, varying priorities, and disparate approaches to government – and the American people chose The Other Guy this time.
There will be some tough days ahead. The Other Guy will pick government officials and nominate judges that you wouldn’t have chosen, and support initiatives that you oppose. But you can take comfort in knowing that the other side won’t actually be much happier. Sure, they’ll score a few victories, but mostly they’ll stew in frustration as the presidential election of The Other Guy fails to bring about much significant change, with most of their platform stymied by the usual sand in the gears of government.
It’s not the end of the world. Also, it’s not the End of the World. The Other Guy isn’t the Antichrist, and his election won’t lead to Armageddon. If you think about it a little bit, you might even find that The Other Side has a few sensible ideas, and some common-sense compromises might be possible on some issues.
On Wednesday, after Your Candidate loses and The Other Guy wins, we Mormons will have some soul-searching to do. Was this really the Mormon Moment that we thought we wanted? It’s a question we’ll be asking for at least the next four years.