It’s the first day of November and I should be knee deep in my novel writing today. I’m not because I’m sitting here at my computer distracted by something a family member said in our weekly internet get together.
“I can’t wait for the morning of the 4th (of November) to have all of this behind us.”
At the time, I couldn’t disabuse him of the thought. But, in good conscience I can’t let it stand either.
The hope for every sane person in the United States is that on November 3rd, 2020 there will be an indisputable mandate from the citizens of this nation. The desire is that the election of 2020 will not be occluded by doubt. That on the morning of November 4th there will be a clear winner and that their opponent will graciously concede.
I hope for that, too. I wouldn’t put money on it though.
The scenarios I see are much left comfortable. You should not be frightened or alarmed by my vision, you should be aware.
The first scenario is what “The Guardian” referred to as the ‘red mirage‘. In this scenario, Trump declares victory early, before all the ballots are counted. Likely, he will do so at the end of Nov. 3rd he will say the early returns show he is the winner. They could, but it is expected that most of the requested mail-in ballots will favor the Democratic candidate.
If Trump declares an early victory, and I believe he will because of his rampant narcissism, then the elation of victory of his followers becomes what if it is proven that he did not win? It becomes disappointment and rage.
Is Trump, Mr. Stand Back and Stand By, going to be the person to help his followers understand the unique nature of the 2020 election, or is he going to inflame them? He is a carnival barker and he likes nothing better than to command his ‘army’. He will fight for the Presidency because the alternative is becoming the very thing he despises most – a loser.
In other scenarios I have proposed, even if somehow Trump doesn’t declare open victory, be prepared for every possible challenge to the electoral process. Especially look for disruption and accusations of fraud in battleground states, or states that flip from red to blue.
He has spent four years preparing his base for rampant voter fraud. Even though this is a fiction, disprovable and insidious he was undermining the American election process from the very night of his victory. Nothing less than a mandate on his perfection will satisfy him. He won’t receive that on November 3rd, so on November 4th his attempts to fabricate one will begin.
The legal battles are already being prepared in some of the most likely contested states. Accusations of failure to deliver and efforts to disregard mail in ballots have surfaced in Pennsylvania, and the republicans in the state of Texas are trying to invalidate over 100,000 ballots that were received by drive through voting in traditionally Democratic Harris County.
Look for the long game. Much as we all may hope for a clean transfer of power, Trump has never stated that he would leave the White House peacefully. He has equivocated, hedge ad flat out said if there was fraud he would not leave. The cultivation of the idea of the pervasiveness of fraud in the minds of his followers has not been an accident. It is a lever that he will use, a threat of violence that he will employ against the expected system of the transfer of power.
No one in the government should be so naïve after four years of this administration to think that the ‘norms’ of the Presidency will be followed. I suspect that Trump will hold the White House hostage. That is the final bargaining chip that he holds and he will not be parted from it because of some idea of propriety.
He could hold it until he has a deal that provides him immunity from prosecution not only of federal crimes, but also of state crimes. By arresting the Presidency he could win his own freedom. Trump has no intention of going to prison.
Will there be violence? I sincerely hope that Americans can remember that we are Americans first. But, that is not the belief of the majority of the Trump supporters. They hold the ides of a hierarchy of citizenry and a belief in the purity of being American. And, sadly, many of them carry a romanticism about defending their way of life.
I think Trump would revel in the idea that people were willing to kill for him. Or die for him. I think that would provide more proof of the image he carries of his own godhood.
Speaking of his narcissism, Mary Trump PhD. gave a stark warning of what will happen if Trump loses.
“My theory about the way Donald has run his campaign is that he knows he’s in desperate shape, so he’s going to burn it all down, sow more chaos and division because that’s where he succeeds,”Mary Trump, PhD.
Don’t look for normal after November 3rd. We will be entering a phase where an unhinged man will be looking to avenge himself on the nation that dismissed him.
To borrow and invert a phrase from Churchill – November 3rd won’t be the end of the beginning – it will be the beginning of the end.