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LETTERS

Think we’re out of the woods regarding our democracy? Do the math

Trump paraphernalia stands for sale outside the US Capitol in Washington on Jan. 7.
Trump paraphernalia stands for sale outside the US Capitol in Washington on Jan. 7.John Moore/Getty

Joe Biden’s margin of victory of 7 million popular votes could cloud our awareness of the precariousness of our democracy.

Let’s do the math. Biden won Georgia, Arizona, and Wisconsin by a combined total of fewer than 43,000 votes. If half of that number had swung from Biden to Trump, Trump would have won the combined 37 electoral votes, creating a 269-vote tie in the Electoral College. The process of breaking that tie probably would have reelected Trump. An additional swing of one-half of fewer than 34,000 votes in Nevada would have added to the Trump column, giving him a majority of 275 electoral votes. Thus, a swing of fewer than 38,500 votes in total potentially could have made Trump the winner.

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A different tally by this tiny number, representing only .025 percent of the total vote, could have elected Trump.

Renée Graham correctly calls Trump a “one-term president trying to crucify democracy” (“The last temptation of Mike Pence,” Ideas, Jan. 3). If we want to preserve democracy, we have a lot of work to do. Relatively few votes could give us another Trump-like president in 2024, if not Trump himself. Democracy itself is at stake.

John L. Hodge

Jamaica Plain