Mario Salazar, October 12, 2020
During the 2016 election campaign, Dan Bowman a Trump supporter, said that if Hillary was elected, “She needs to be taken out.” This threat was in response to Trump’s claims that if he did not win the election, it was rigged.
In March of 2020, Trump engaged in a campaign to discredit Governor Whitmer of Michigan. He claimed she was playing politics by enacting Covid 19 measures. In April, armed men protesting the measures demonstrated in Lansing and were allowed inside the legislative chambers. The presence of armed men intimidated some members of the legislature to such extent, that they decided to wear bullet-proof vests.
Earlier this month, October 2020, thirteen men were arrested in Michigan by authorities on a charge of planning to kidnap Governor Whitmer and take over state government. This followed vitriolic rhetoric from Trump targeting Whitmer.
Trump’s response to reports of the attempted kidnapping was less than satisfying. While he eventually Tweeted that he has always condemned extreme violence, he appeared to justify the plot on Whitmer’s measures against the virus and her criticism of him.
Responses by Trump to numerous questions about his willingness to accept the results of the 2020 election did not offer reassurance. His position is that if he loses the election it is because it is rigged, and he reserves his right to act. In the past he has mentioned how people with guns, bikers, law enforcement and the military support him. The implication is that they would do his bidding and support whatever actions he takes.
[The military has disavowed any intention to support Trump’s illegal actions if he loses the election and decides to stay in power.]
Trump has insisted without any proof, that there will be illegal activity to turn the election against him. He has raised suspicion on mail-in ballots and in general any not-in-person voting in Democratic states. The real goal of these actions is voter suppression.
During the recent protests against racial injustice, participants have been killed and wounded by vigilantes, inspired by Trump’s continuous Tweets. Federal troops have been used to clear away demonstrators to allow Trump to be photographed in front of a church holding a bible. In these protests rubber bullets, stun grenades and gas were used against many that were just exercising their right to peaceful protest. In some cases, protestors and bystanders were grabbed by unidentified armed men, pushed into vans and questioned. In most cases, the illegally detained persons were released with no charges. These armed men appeared to be Federal law enforcement agents.
It is clear by these actions, that Trump is willing to incite violence and use any means, legal and illegal to get his way and stay in power. His advisors either agree with his methods or are too meek to suggest alternatives. It is also possible that some Trump supporters may take arms to keep him in power.
So, what is going to happen on and after November 3rd?
It is probable that because of the many people that will vote early, by mail or in designated ballot boxes, that we will not know the results that same night.
One scenario is that Trump takes a significant early lead after the polls close. He then could claim victory prematurely and cause chaos. In this case, some would put the validity of any tally updates in peril of not being considered. Armed men could take to the streets to enforce this.
In a case like this, whether all ballots could be counted, and a victor claimed could be in doubt. The final decision could end up in the Supreme Court, as occurred in the 2000 election.
Trump has indicated that he expects a favorable decision from this body, under these circumstances. He has talked about having three Justices that he nominated support him.
Of course, most of us hope for the rule of law to prevail and that there is a peaceful transfer of the presidency. However, Trump’s administration has shown that the logical or legal is not always what takes place. Whether he wins or loses, he has been the best agent of chaos in the history of the presidency of the US.
If the rule of law prevails, it is very possible that we will have a lame (Donald) duck in the White House.