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2024 U.S. Election of President and Vice President

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  • statquo
    replied
    The Atlantic is dedicating their entire issue to what a second Trump administration will look like.

    People are ringing the alarm. Wake up!

    Leave a comment:


  • tbm3fan
    replied
    Originally posted by TopHatter View Post
    Trump’s violent and authoritarian rhetoric on the 2024 campaign trail has attracted growing alarm and comparisons to historical fascist dictators and contemporary populist strongmen. In recent weeks, he has dehumanized his adversaries as “vermin” who must be “rooted out,” declared that immigrants are “poisoning the blood of our country,” encouraged the shooting of shoplifters and suggested that the former chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Mark Milley, deserved to be executed for treason.
    Yep, Hitler would be proud. In fact I think I see his eyes tearing a bit...

    Leave a comment:


  • TopHatter
    replied
    Why a Second Trump Presidency May Be More Radical Than His First

    In the spring of 1989, the Chinese Communist Party used tanks and troops to crush a pro-democracy protest in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square. Most of the West, across traditional partisan lines, was aghast at the crackdown that killed at least hundreds of student activists. But one prominent American was impressed.

    “When the students poured into Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government almost blew it,” Donald Trump said in an interview with Playboy magazine the year after the massacre. “Then they were vicious, they were horrible, but they put it down with strength. That shows you the power of strength. Our country is right now perceived as weak.”

    It was a throwaway line in a wide-ranging interview, delivered to a journalist profiling a 43-year-old celebrity businessman who was not then a player in national politics or world affairs. But in light of what Trump has gone on to become, his exaltation of the ruthless crushing of democratic protesters is steeped in foreshadowing.

    Trump’s violent and authoritarian rhetoric on the 2024 campaign trail has attracted growing alarm and comparisons to historical fascist dictators and contemporary populist strongmen. In recent weeks, he has dehumanized his adversaries as “vermin” who must be “rooted out,” declared that immigrants are “poisoning the blood of our country,” encouraged the shooting of shoplifters and suggested that the former chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Mark Milley, deserved to be executed for treason.

    As he runs for president again facing four criminal prosecutions, Trump may seem more angry, desperate and dangerous to American-style democracy than in his first term. But the throughline that emerges is far more long-running: He has glorified political violence and spoken admiringly of autocrats for decades.

    As a presidential candidate in July 2016, he praised the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein as having been “so good” at killing terrorists. Months after being inaugurated, he told the strongman leader of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, that his brutal campaign of thousands of extrajudicial killings in the name of fighting drugs was “an unbelievable job.” And throughout his four years in the Oval Office, Trump blew through boundaries and violated democratic norms.

    What would be different in a second Trump administration is not so much his character as his surroundings. Forces that somewhat contained his autocratic tendencies in his first term — staff members who saw their job as sometimes restraining him, a few congressional Republicans episodically willing to criticize or oppose him, a partisan balance on the Supreme Court that occasionally ruled against him — would all be weaker.

    As a result, Trump’s and his advisers’ more extreme policy plans and ideas for a second term would have a greater prospect of becoming reality.

    A Radical Agenda

    To be sure, some of what Trump and his allies are planning is in line with what any standard-issue Republican president would most likely do. For example, Trump would very likely roll back many of President Joe Biden’s policies to curb carbon emissions and hasten the transition to electric cars. Such a reversal of various rules and policies would significantly weaken environmental protections, but much of the changes reflect routine and long-standing conservative skepticism of environmental regulations.

    Other parts of Trump’s agenda, however, are aberrational. No U.S. president before him had toyed with withdrawing from NATO, the United States’ military alliance with Western democracies. He has said he would fundamentally reevaluate “NATO’s purpose and NATO’s mission” in a second term.

    He has said he would order the military to attack drug cartels in Mexico, which would violate international law unless its government consented. It most likely would not.

    He would also use the military on domestic soil. While it is generally illegal to use troops for domestic law enforcement, the Insurrection Act allows exceptions. After some demonstrations against police violence in 2020 became riots, Trump had an order drafted to use troops to crack down on protesters in Washington, D.C., but didn’t sign it. He suggested at a rally in Iowa this year that he intends to unilaterally send troops into Democratic-run cities to enforce public order in general.

    “You look at any Democrat-run state, and it’s just not the same — it doesn’t work,” Trump told the crowd, calling cities like New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco crime dens. “We cannot let it happen any longer. And one of the other things I’ll do — because you’re supposed to not be involved in that, you just have to be asked by the governor or the mayor to come in — the next time, I’m not waiting.”

    Trump’s plans to purge immigrants living in the country illegally include sweeping raids, huge detention camps, deportations on the scale of millions per year, stopping asylum, trying to end birthright citizenship for babies born on U.S. soil to parents living in the country illegally and invoking the Insurrection Act near the southern border to also use troops as immigration agents.

    Trump would seek to expand presidential power in myriad ways — concentrating greater authority over the executive branch in the White House, ending the independence of agencies Congress set up to operate outside of presidential control and reducing civil service protections to make it easier to fire and replace tens of thousands of government workers.

    More than anything else, Trump’s vow to use the Justice Department to wreak vengeance against his adversaries is a naked challenge to democratic values. Building on how he tried to get prosecutors to go after his enemies while in office, it would end the post-Watergate norm of investigative independence from White House political control.

    In all these efforts, Trump would be backed in a second term by a well-funded outside infrastructure. In 2016, conservative think tanks were bastions of George W. Bush-style Republicanism. But new ones run by Trump administration veterans have sprung up, and the venerable Heritage Foundation has refashioned itself to stay in step with Trumpism.

    A coalition has been drawing up America First-style policy plans, nicknamed Project 2025. (Trump’s campaign has expressed appreciation but said only plans announced by him or his campaign count.) While some proposals under development in such places would advance long-standing Republican megadonor goals, such as curbing regulations on businesses, others are more tuned to Trump’s personal interests.

    The Center for Renewing America, for example, has published a paper titled “The U.S. Justice Department Is Not Independent.” The paper was written by Jeffrey Clark, whom Trump nearly made acting attorney general to aid his attempt to subvert the election and is facing criminal charges in Georgia in connection with that effort.

    Asked for comment, a spokesperson for Trump did not address specifics but instead criticized The New York Times while calling Trump “strong on crime.”

    Weakened Guardrails

    Even running in 2016, Trump flouted democratic norms.

    He falsely portrayed his loss in the Iowa caucuses as fraud and suggested he would treat the results of the general election as legitimate only if he won. He threatened to imprison Hillary Clinton, smeared Mexican immigrants as rapists and promised to bar Muslims from entering the United States. He offered to pay the legal bills of any supporters who beat up protesters at his rallies and stoked hatred against reporters covering his events.

    In office, Trump refused to divest from his businesses, and people courting his favor booked expensive blocks of rooms in his hotels. Despite an anti-nepotism law, he gave White House jobs to his daughter and son-in-law. He used emergency power to spend more on a border wall than Congress authorized. His lawyers floated a pardon at his campaign chair, whom Trump praised for not “flipping” as prosecutors tried unsuccessfully to get him to cooperate as a witness in the Russia inquiry; Trump later did pardon him.

    But some of the most potentially serious of his violations of norms fell short of fruition.

    Trump pressured the Justice Department to prosecute his adversaries. The Justice Department opened several criminal investigations, from the scrutiny of former Secretary of State John Kerry and of former FBI Director James Comey to the attempt by a special counsel, John Durham, to find a basis to charge Obama-era national security officials or Clinton with crimes connected to the origins of the Russia investigation. But to Trump’s fury, prosecutors decided against bringing such charges.

    And neither effort for which he was impeached succeeded. Trump tried to coerce Ukraine into opening a criminal investigation into Biden by withholding military aid, but it did not cooperate. Trump sought to subvert his 2020 election loss and stoked the Capitol riot, but Vice President Mike Pence and congressional majorities rejected his attempt to stay in power.

    There is reason to believe various obstacles and bulwarks that limited Trump in his first term would be absent in a second one.

    Some of what Trump tried to do was thwarted by incompetence and dysfunction among his initial team. But over four years, those who stayed with him learned to wield power more effectively. After courts blocked his first, haphazardly crafted travel ban, for example, his team developed a version that the Supreme Court allowed to take effect.

    Four years of his appointments created an entrenched Republican supermajority on the Supreme Court that most likely would now side with him on some cases that he lost, such as the 5-4 decision in June 2020 that blocked him from ending a program that shields from deportation certain people living in the country illegally who had been brought as children and grew up as Americans.

    Republicans in Congress were often partners and enablers — working with him to confirm judges and cut corporate taxes, while performing scant oversight. But a few key congressional Republicans occasionally denounced his rhetoric or checked his more disruptive proposals.

    In 2017, then-Sen. Bob Corker rebuked Trump for making reckless threats toward North Korea on Twitter, and then-Sen. John McCain provided the decisive vote against Trump’s push to rescind, with no replacement plan, a law that makes health insurance coverage widely available.

    It is likely that Republicans in Congress would be even more pliable in any second Trump term. The party has become more inured to and even enthusiastic about Trump’s willingness to cross lines. And Trump has worn down, outlasted, intimidated into submission or driven out leading Republican lawmakers who have independent standing and demonstrated occasional willingness to oppose him.

    McCain, who was the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, died in 2018. Former Rep. Liz Cheney, who voted to impeach Trump for inciting the Jan. 6, 2021, riot and helped lead the committee that investigated those events, lost her seat to a pro-Trump primary challenger. Sen. Mitt Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee and the only GOP senator who voted to convict Trump at his first impeachment trial, is retiring.

    Fear of violence by Trump supporters also enforces control. In recent books, both Romney and Cheney said that Republican colleagues, whom they did not name, told them they wanted to vote against Trump in the Jan. 6-related impeachment proceedings but did not do so out of fear for their and their families’ safety.

    Personnel Is Policy

    Perhaps the most important check on Trump’s presidency was internal administration resistance to some of his more extreme demands. A parade of his own former high-level appointees has since warned against returning him to office, including a former White House chief of staff, John Kelly; former defense secretaries Jim Mattis and Mark T. Esper; former national security adviser John Bolton; former Attorney General William Barr; and others.

    Trump in turn has denounced them all as weak, stupid and disloyal. He has privately told those close to him that his biggest mistakes concerned the people he appointed, in particular his choices for attorney general. The advisers who have stuck with him are determined that if he wins a new term, there will be no officials who intentionally stymie his agenda.

    In addition to developing policy papers, the coalition of think tanks run by people aligned with Trump has been compiling a database of thousands of vetted potential recruits to hand to a transition team if he wins the election. Similar efforts are underway by former senior Trump administration officials to prepare to stock the government with lawyers likely to find ways to bless radical White House ideas rather than raising legal objections.

    Such staffing efforts would build on a shift in his final year as president. In 2020, Trump replaced advisers who had sought to check him and installed a young aide, John McEntee, to root out further officials deemed insufficiently loyal.

    Depending on Senate elections, confirming particularly contentious nominees to important positions might be challenging. But another norm violation Trump gradually developed was making aggressive use of his power to temporarily fill vacancies with “acting” heads for positions that are supposed to undergo Senate confirmation.

    In 2020, for example, Trump made Richard Grenell — a combative Trump ally and former ambassador to Germany — acting director of national intelligence. Two prior Trump-era intelligence leaders had angered Trump by defending an assessment that Russia had covertly tried to help his 2016 campaign and by informing Democratic leaders it was doing so again in 2020. Grenell instead won Trump’s praise by using the role to declassify sensitive materials that Republicans used to portray the Russia investigation as suspicious.

    After Trump left office, there were many proposals to codify into law democratic norms he violated. Ideas included tightening limits on presidents’ use of emergency powers, requiring disclosure of their taxes, giving teeth to a constitutional ban on outside payments and making it harder to abuse their pardon power and authority over prosecutors.

    In December 2021, when Democrats still controlled the House, it passed many such proposals as the Protecting Our Democracy Act. Every Republican but one — then-Rep. Adam Kinzinger, who was retiring after having voted to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 riot — voted against the bill, which died in the Senate.

    The debate on the House floor largely played out on a premise that reduced its urgency: Trump was gone. Democrats argued for viewing the reforms as being about future presidents, while Republicans dismissed it as an unnecessary swipe at Trump.

    “Donald Trump is — unfortunately — no longer president,” said Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Ark. “Time to stop living in the past.”

    _________

    Why are you still talking about Trump?
    Trump isn't president anymore
    Trump isn't in power anymore

    Donald Trump is — unfortunately — still the undisputed Leader of the former Republican Party and, by far, the frontrunner for that party's presidential ticket in 2024.

    Donald Trump has been clearly laying out his plans for a fascistic second term - which the Electoral College could hand to him, again.

    It's more than past time to start acting like it.

    Leave a comment:


  • TopHatter
    replied
    Romney says any Democrat would be ‘an upgrade’ over Trump in 2024
    Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) signaled that nearly any candidate in the 2024 field, of either party, would be an “upgrade” over another term for former President Trump.

    “I’d be happy to support virtually any one of the Republicans — maybe not Vivek [Ramaswamy] — but the others that are running would be acceptable to me, and I’d be happy to vote for them,” the retiring senator said Friday in an interview with CBS’s Norah O’Donnell.

    “I’d be happy to vote for a number of the Democrats too,” he continued. “It would be an upgrade, in my opinion, from Donald Trump and perhaps also from Joe Biden.”

    Romney announced in September that he will not seek reelection, sparking a wave of gloating insults from Trump and his allies.

    “Mitt Romney, sometimes referred to as Pierre Delecto, will not be seeking a second term in the U.S. Senate, where he did not serve with distinction,” Trump wrote in all caps on Truth Social when Romney announced his retirement, referencing the pseudonym Romney used for a private Twitter account.

    Romney, 76, cited his age in his retirement message.

    “Frankly, it’s time for a new generation of leaders,” he said. “They’re the ones that need to make the decisions that will shape the world they will be living in.”

    The Utah senator has been one of Trump’s most vocal critics among Senate Republicans.

    He voted to impeach Trump twice and has continuously marked the former president as a danger to the country.

    The Utah Republican’s biographer, McKay Coppins, late last month suggested the animosity between the former president and senator is so heavy that he could even opt to endorse Biden later in the election.

    “I would keep an eye out for whether Romney does something like endorse Joe Biden late in the election,” Coppins said in an October interview with “The Press Box” podcast. “I mean, I have no idea, I haven’t talked to him about this. I would not be shocked if he did.”
    _______

    Leave a comment:


  • rj1
    replied
    Originally posted by statquo View Post

    It’s coming. They have their templates in Russia and Hungary. They’ve given up on the current system, they want those ones. Non GQP Americans need to wake the fuck up and see it what it is. Liberals and woke college kids should’ve learned their lesson in 2016 when they protest voted or didn’t vote and handed the GQP 3 Supreme Court judges who immediately overturned Roe. That was the taste. They’ve named their enemies, and they’re not external. They’re going to go for the complete destruction of liberalism in the US as they have in Russia and Hungary. They’re going after democracy not because it’s democracy. It’s liberal democracy they want to eradicate. I’m dreading 2024.
    That's what dumbass Americans get for only voting for one of two parties and having a political base in both parties and the judicial system that actively prevents anything else from being a credible option. If you defend the duopoly system don't cry to me when the only allowed alternative comes to power.

    Leave a comment:


  • rj1
    replied
    The other prong involves using a legally dubious loophole to strip thousands of nonpartisan civil servants of their statutory protections against dismissal. “We will pass critical reforms making every executive branch employee fireable by the president of the United States,” Trump remarked at one recent rally. “The deep state must and will be brought to heel.” His subordinates have also advanced an extreme version of the unitary executive theory that would, in their eyes, override civil service reforms like the Pendleton Act of 1883. The merit-based civil service would be discarded in favor of government by cronies and loyalists.
    This already kind of exists. There's a law on the book I think dating to the 1940s of they can change the compensation of any federal employee to $1. It was their way of not firing but getting rid of employees that were surplus to needs.

    Leave a comment:


  • rj1
    replied
    Originally posted by InExile View Post
    Recent polls are showing Donald Trump leading Joe Biden in multiple swing states by comfortable margins causing panic amongst the Democrats. It is not just one poll, there have been multiple ones over the past week, all showing Trump in the lead.

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/latest_polls/

    After thinking about it, it is not really that surprising. US elections have been extremely close for the past few decades with all elections being decided by small margins with maybe one or two exceptions like Obama - McCain in 2008. Then the Republicans were blamed for the financial crash although the causes of the 2008 crash were due to policies supported by both the Clinton and Bush administrations over more than a decade.

    While the inflation is not Biden's fault, swing voters will probably not be forgiving after losing almost 20 percent of their purchasing power over the past 3 years. Added to this concern about his age, the situation at the border, and woke extremism, it is not surprising that Trump is ahead. Perhaps changing to another Democrat (say a popular governor like Gretchen Whitmer) might help, although it is probably too late now. And some of these issues are owned by Democrats as a whole.

    Arguments like Trump's awfulness or his threat to democracy probably appeal to only a small sliver of voters, perhaps overrepresented in the chattering classes. This probably explains why Never Trumpers were never more than 5% of Republican voters.
    It is one year out and stuff can change (for Biden's sake he needs Israel/Palestine as an issue to be completely done months before, because the young progressives whose votes he's counting on are furious about it, there's such a difference in opinion between their older voters and younger voters), I'm frankly amazed at the tone deafness of the Democrats. It's the exact same tone deafness that led to Bush losing in 1992 and Clinton becoming President. I think there's also a parallel to the 1930s where the Republicans were big business, the northeast, the well-to-do, and the Democrats had everyone else, it's just the two parties have flipped. Thankfully for the Democrats the big business and well-to-do have expanded to the West Coast and islands around the country, and the black vote is reflexively loyal to them.

    In a world where prices have gone up as they have, people that largely hate politics and don't pay attention to the details (which is most Americans whether we like it or not) just pay attention to how their life goes. If inflation does the magic thing Democrats want and "gets back down to 2%" in a metric that has always been heavily contrived by the feds regardless of who is President, it's not like prices go back down. This is something that is simply getting ignored by everyone in the political and media class. Because if prices went back down to what they were, that would be deflation, and the government does not want deflation. Simple food items for me have gone up in price 40%. A 20-oz soda is now at least $2. A meal at a restaurant that used to be $10 is now $13. I used to get a haircut at GreatClips for $14. It's now $20. That's a 43% increase. Multiply by all goods and services the regular person buys, it adds up. A Canadian political podcast I listen to from some time ago they said the price of just food for the average Canadian had gone up $1000 Canadian in a year. I see no reason it would be markedly different for Americans. Meanwhile services cost more and yet anecdotally the quality of service has gone downhill post-Covid.

    I have a pretty good white-collar job. Last time my performance was reviewed I got a 4% pay increase. I was shrug shoulders at the time because in real terms comparing how much up in price everything went up I was probably still making less. Most people in this country have worse jobs than me and did not get 4% pay increases.

    If you view Trump as an existential threat to this country, okay, tell Biden to do better or that he needs to resign, and for the Democrats to wake the eff up. Or the Democrats are going to have massive numbers of voters leave them for either third party alternatives that appear to be more a thing next year or Trump.

    Leave a comment:


  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    The other prong involves using a legally dubious loophole to strip thousands of nonpartisan civil servants of their statutory protections against dismissal. “We will pass critical reforms making every executive branch employee fireable by the president of the United States,” Trump remarked at one recent rally. “The deep state must and will be brought to heel.” His subordinates have also advanced an extreme version of the unitary executive theory that would, in their eyes, override civil service reforms like the Pendleton Act of 1883. The merit-based civil service would be discarded in favor of government by cronies and loyalists.

    This right here. I was caught up in this net when he tried it in 2019-20 but then it died out. I am so glad I am retiring 6 months before the election so I am free and clear. But I have coworkers who worry about this. And given the area where I live there are some idiots screaming "Hell Yeah!!!" totally missing this applies to them as well.

    Leave a comment:


  • TopHatter
    replied
    If Trump Wins Again, There May Be No Stopping Him


    Seven years ago, former President Donald Trump raised his hand to take the presidential oath of office. He swore to “faithfully execute the office of president of the United States” and to “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution.” Things went downhill for him—and for the country—from there. His presidency ended in an insurrection that sought to illegally keep him in power.

    In legal filings before the Colorado Supreme Court, Trump is now arguing that he never actually took an oath to “support” the Constitution. He claims that Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment, which disqualifies political officeholders who engaged in rebellion or insurrection, doesn’t actually apply to the presidency because the president is not an “officer of the United States.”

    That provision applies to anyone who previously swore an oath to “support” the Constitution. But Trump and his legal team have claimed that the presidential oath instead says the swearer will “preserve, protect, and defend” the Constitution. Beyond the bad-faith legal hair splitting that this argument represents, Trump’s claim also underscores how much damage he will do to the American constitutional order if he returns to power in 2024.

    Trump, as I’ve noted before, all but promises authoritarian rule. His language toward his political opponents has never been even-keeled: He opened his first campaign speech of the 2024 cycle by declaring to his supporters that “I am your retribution,” at a rally in Waco, Texas. But his latest rhetorical turns are disturbing even by those standards. In a Veterans Day speech in New Hampshire earlier this month, Trump embraced what could be seen as eliminationist language about his perceived political opponents.

    “We pledge to you that we will root out the Communists, Marxists, fascists, and the radical left thugs that live like vermin within the confines of our country, that lie and steal and cheat on elections,” he told the crowd. “They’ll do anything, whether legally or illegally, to destroy America and to destroy the American dream.” Combined with his threats to use the Justice Department to round up leading Democrats, Trump is telegraphing his plans to govern as a dictator.

    What could stop him if he wanted to do so? There are five practical checks on any presidency. The first is the executive branch itself. Cabinet members and other political appointees have some leeway to delay a president’s wishes, to partially enforce them, or even to ignore them altogether. In theory, this shouldn’t happen because the White House and the other departments are supposed to coordinate their actions and ensure everyone is on the same page. But with regularity during the chaotic maelstrom of the first Trump administration, it did.

    Top officials routinely contradicted Trump’s public comments or possible policy shifts, choosing to interpret his frequent off-the-cuff remarks as anything but a direct order. Department and agency heads slow-walked controversial policies or made them low priorities. Special counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the Russia investigation documented multiple instances where Trump’s subordinates refused to carry out his instructions because they would have amounted to obstruction of justice.

    For all of his rants against the “deep state” during his first term, Trump seemed to tolerate a certain amount of insubordination, perhaps accepting that his instructions should be taken seriously instead of literally. His second term could be vastly different, however. Trumpworld is devoting tremendous resources to reshaping the executive branch in Trump’s image. One prong of this strategy involves ideologically pre-screening political appointees for MAGA loyalty. This makes it unlikely that, for example, the FBI and the Justice Department would maintain their post-Watergate independence from the White House.

    The other prong involves using a legally dubious loophole to strip thousands of nonpartisan civil servants of their statutory protections against dismissal. “We will pass critical reforms making every executive branch employee fireable by the president of the United States,” Trump remarked at one recent rally. “The deep state must and will be brought to heel.” His subordinates have also advanced an extreme version of the unitary executive theory that would, in their eyes, override civil service reforms like the Pendleton Act of 1883. The merit-based civil service would be discarded in favor of government by cronies and loyalists.

    Another potential check on Trump’s second term would be Congress. Constitutionally speaking, this should be the most important one. But the modern nature of lawmaking means it will likely be the most impotent check. House and Senate investigations will be ultimately meaningless if nobody does anything about them. And since Republicans have already declined twice to convict Trump on impeachment charges, including after he sent a mob to ransack their workplace, it is doubtful that they would support a third attempt—especially if it risked facing his extralegal ire.

    The third and most imposing check on any president is the courts. This too is a familiar obstacle for Trump. He spent his first term losing court battles across the country. Trump’s verbal attacks on judges have only escalated in recent years, even as he is under nominal gag orders in some of the prosecutions against him. Trump recently paid a $10,000 fine for breaking the order in one case and verbally attacked a judge’s staff through his lawyer.

    The courts have been changed by the Trump years, however. He appointed a whopping one-quarter of active federal judges by the time he left office. A conservative litigant can guarantee a sympathetic judge by filing their lawsuit in a federal court in Texas, where a handful of hard-right judges have exclusive control over the docket. From there they go on to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, where conservatives have a clear majority—Trump alone appointed almost half of its members. And then the last stop is the Supreme Court, where half of the conservative supermajority are also Trump appointees.

    Of course, as I’ve noted before, the Supreme Court wasn’t as friendly to Trump as he thought during his first term. The justices have also refused to entertain his claims about the 2020 election or substantially hinder any of the post-presidency investigations into him so far. This makes it unlikely that the court would support truly egregious actions. The threat always remains, however, that he could simply defy the courts if they ruled against him.

    No president has ever done so—Andrew Jackson’s famous quote about John Marshall is apocryphal, and he wasn’t a party in the case in question—but the threat remains. His rift with the Federalist Society and the conservative legal movement is now public. And since he frequently describes judges as corrupt and biased, his supporters may well be primed to accept the constitutional crisis that it would represent. After all, they stuck with him through January 6, so there is little reason to believe they would abandon him now.

    Fourth, Americans could save everyone a lot of trouble by simply not electing Donald Trump to the presidency in 2024. They’ve already rejected him twice by overwhelmingly backing Hillary Clinton in 2016 and Joe Biden in 2020. (The Electoral College got in the way the first time.) And since Trump is still deeply unpopular with most Americans, they may very well do it again next year.

    One important variable from 2020 is also missing: Trump is no longer the president, which means he doesn’t have nominal control over the military and federal law enforcement. As a result, the risk of another coup attempt in 2024 is substantially lower than it was three years ago.

    At the same time, he may not need political violence this time. Biden’s sagging poll numbers—including among young voters and some key constituencies that helped get him to the White House last time—could make it possible for Trump to attain another Electoral College–only victory by picking off enough key states.

    Finally, there is the Twenty-Second Amendment. Since its ratification in 1951, all presidents have been limited to two full terms in office. That prohibition is absolute: Neither Congress nor the electorate can suspend or lift it. It is also deeply ingrained in American culture. George Washington established it as a tradition by refusing to run again in 1796, and the voters denied third terms to Ulysses S. Grant and Theodore Roosevelt when they sought them before the amendment existed. Only Franklin D. Roosevelt has ever broken the Washington tradition and served more than two terms. Constitutionally speaking, no matter what else happens, Donald Trump would no longer be president at the stroke of noon on January 20, 2029.

    Or would he? Since taking office in 2017, Trump has often “joked” about defying the limit. The most famous incident came in 2018, during a meeting with GOP donors where he discussed Chinese President Xi Jinping, who abandoned the country’s pattern of cycling out party leaders in favor of permanent rule. “He’s now president for life,” Trump reportedly said. “President for life. No, he’s great. And look, he was able to do that. I think it’s great. Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot someday.” He’s made similar jokes in public and in private since then.

    Maybe Trump is just kidding. (After all, he would be 83 years old in 2029.) Maybe he’s not. This is a man who has promised to govern like a dictator instead of a democratically elected president if given the opportunity. He has already proven his willingness to use extrajudicial tactics and political violence to maintain his grip on power.

    And, as he has so forthrightly told the Colorado courts, he does not think he is actually bound to “support” the Constitution anyway. If a presidential candidate is telling you that he wants to end the republic, believe him.
    __________

    Leave a comment:


  • Albany Rifles
    replied
    Originally posted by statquo View Post

    It’s coming. They have their templates in Russia and Hungary. They’ve given up on the current system, they want those ones. Non GQP Americans need to wake the fuck up and see it what it is. Liberals and woke college kids should’ve learned their lesson in 2016 when they protest voted or didn’t vote and handed the GQP 3 Supreme Court judges who immediately overturned Roe. That was the taste. They’ve named their enemies, and they’re not external. They’re going to go for the complete destruction of liberalism in the US as they have in Russia and Hungary. They’re going after democracy not because it’s democracy. It’s liberal democracy they want to eradicate. I’m dreading 2024.
    You are right on waking the fuck up! I have that argument with my 29 year old son regularly.

    This was a chilling listen today on how the Holy Roller Right has taken over the GQP.

    If we aren't careful we'll wake up one day and find ourselves living in Gilead.

    https://www.npr.org/2023/11/29/12158...gelical-church

    Leave a comment:


  • statquo
    replied
    Originally posted by TopHatter View Post
    Nothing...I've got nothing.
    It’s coming. They have their templates in Russia and Hungary. They’ve given up on the current system, they want those ones. Non GQP Americans need to wake the fuck up and see it what it is. Liberals and woke college kids should’ve learned their lesson in 2016 when they protest voted or didn’t vote and handed the GQP 3 Supreme Court judges who immediately overturned Roe. That was the taste. They’ve named their enemies, and they’re not external. They’re going to go for the complete destruction of liberalism in the US as they have in Russia and Hungary. They’re going after democracy not because it’s democracy. It’s liberal democracy they want to eradicate. I’m dreading 2024.
    Last edited by statquo; 29 Nov 23,, 22:15.

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  • TopHatter
    replied
    Donald Trump Wants Federal Government To “Come Down Hard” On MSNBC For Its Criticism Of Him



    Former President Donald Trump’s attacks on the media are central to his image, but he’s once again calling on the federal government to take action against NBCUniversal for its MSNBC criticism of him.

    In a late night post on his social media platform Truth Social, Trump complained that MSNBC “uses FREE government approved airwaves, and yet it is nothing but a 24 hour hit job” on him and “the Republican party for the purposes of ELECTION INTERFERENCE.”

    He also attacked Brian Roberts, the CEO of NBCU parent Comcast, as a “slimeball who has been able to get away from these constant attacks for years.”

    “It’s the world’s biggest political contribution to the Radical Left Democrats who, by the way, are destroying our Country. Our so-called ‘government’ should come down hard on them and make them pay for their illegal political activity. Much more to come, watch!”

    A bit of background: MSNBC is a cable network, so it does not use the public airwaves. Yet even if it was a broadcast outlet, the FCC has been clear that it will not regulate news programming content. The Fairness Doctrine, which required that broadcasters present an array of viewpoints on controversial issues, was abandoned more than 35 years ago during Ronald Reagan’s presidency.

    The Federal Election Commission expenditure rules, meanwhile, exclude the news media, or more specifically, “any cost incurred in covering or carrying a news story, commentary, or editorial by any broadcasting station (including a cable television operator, programmer or producer).”

    Trump’s attacks on NBC, MSNBC and Roberts are nothing new. In the first year of his presidency, he was upset over the network’s reporting and suggested that NBC’s broadcast license be challenged. Ajit Pai, who Trump appointed to chair the FCC, said a week later that the FCC “under the law does not have the authority to revoke the license of a broadcast station based on the content of a particular newscast.”

    While Trump’s Truth Social post was one of many, many outbursts at the news media, his suggestion of government retaliation, something that would surely raise a First Amendment challenge, also comes as many of his allies and others on the right chide tech platforms for censorship over their content moderation practices.

    The Republican attorneys general of Missouri and Louisiana have been challenging the Biden administration’s contacts with social media platforms, claiming that they were efforts to curb misinformation about Covid vaccines and elections were in fact censoring conservative speech. The administration has argued that it is merely pointing out the spread of misinformation on platforms about urgent issues of public health and election integrity. Supreme Court last month lifted a preliminary injunction on Biden administration contacts while it will hear arguments in the case in a hearing next year.

    Trump has told supporters that he would be their “retribution” in a second term, and has vowed to appoint a special prosecutor to go after Joe Biden and his family. The New York Times and The Washington Post also have been reporting in recent weeks on Trump and his allies’ plans for a second term, including taking greater hold over the federal workforce.
    ________

    Nothing...I've got nothing.

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  • tbm3fan
    replied
    Originally posted by InExile View Post
    Recent polls are showing Donald Trump leading Joe Biden in multiple swing states by comfortable margins causing panic amongst the Democrats. It is not just one poll, there have been multiple ones over the past week, all showing Trump in the lead.

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/latest_polls/

    After thinking about it, it is not really that surprising. US elections have been extremely close for the past few decades with all elections being decided by small margins with maybe one or two exceptions like Obama - McCain in 2008. Then the Republicans were blamed for the financial crash although the causes of the 2008 crash were due to policies supported by both the Clinton and Bush administrations over more than a decade.

    While the inflation is not Biden's fault, swing voters will probably not be forgiving after losing almost 20 percent of their purchasing power over the past 3 years. Added to this concern about his age, the situation at the border, and woke extremism, it is not surprising that Trump is ahead. Perhaps changing to another Democrat (say a popular governor like Gretchen Whitmer) might help, although it is probably too late now. And some of these issues are owned by Democrats as a whole.

    Arguments like Trump's awfulness or his threat to democracy probably appeal to only a small sliver of voters, perhaps overrepresented in the chattering classes. This probably explains why Never Trumpers were never more than 5% of Republican voters.
    These type of polls are worthless. Every single President I have known has always had low polling numbers in the year before their second election. Trump did also but we also know he has a fairly hard upper limit on those who will VOTE for him. Somewhere around 43%. Even Biden will have a hard number given how split the electorate is. This polling is like an American pasttime where everybody gets to hate the guy in office and can say he is responsible why I didn't get my raise or promotion. Hell, even Newsome, in California a heavily blue state, is below 50% at the moment in his second term. Yep, he is the reason why I got crabgrass in my lawn. Damn him!

    None of this means much when it comes down to the moment you are marking your ballot. That is not what the polls assess. Are all those people going to hold their nose and vote Trump? I don't think so. Not to mention that he is a known quantity. He will probably get the same amount of votes as last time which explains why the Repubs are so determined to limit voting one way or another for the Dems in key states. If just 80% of the voting public always showed up to vote then very few Repubs would ever get elected and they know it.

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  • InExile
    replied

    Recent polls are showing Donald Trump leading Joe Biden in multiple swing states by comfortable margins causing panic amongst the Democrats. It is not just one poll, there have been multiple ones over the past week, all showing Trump in the lead.

    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/latest_polls/

    After thinking about it, it is not really that surprising. US elections have been extremely close for the past few decades with all elections being decided by small margins with maybe one or two exceptions like Obama - McCain in 2008. Then the Republicans were blamed for the financial crash although the causes of the 2008 crash were due to policies supported by both the Clinton and Bush administrations over more than a decade.

    While the inflation is not Biden's fault, swing voters will probably not be forgiving after losing almost 20 percent of their purchasing power over the past 3 years. Added to this concern about his age, the situation at the border, and woke extremism, it is not surprising that Trump is ahead. Perhaps changing to another Democrat (say a popular governor like Gretchen Whitmer) might help, although it is probably too late now. And some of these issues are owned by Democrats as a whole.

    Arguments like Trump's awfulness or his threat to democracy probably appeal to only a small sliver of voters, perhaps overrepresented in the chattering classes. This probably explains why Never Trumpers were never more than 5% of Republican voters.

    Leave a comment:


  • TopHatter
    replied
    Suppose There Is a Contingent Election in the House on Jan. 6, 2025
    With Bobby Kennedy Jr. and some No Labels candidate on the ballot next year, there is a small chance that one or both of them could pick off a state or two. It is not likely, but it could happen what with both Trump and Biden unpopular and Trump potentially heading for prison by Election Day next year. Alaska and Maine are both states where independents do well and both now use ranked choice voting, which people don't fully understand. It is conceivable that the No Labels candidate or Bobby Jr. wins one of them and that is enough to keep Biden and Trump just under 270. Then the election goes to the House, with every state getting one vote.

    Currently, Republicans control 26 House delegations, Democrats control 22, and Minnesota and North Carolina are split. Suppose the presidential election goes to the House. Does that mean Trump would get 26 votes to Biden's 22 and thus win? Obviously that depends on the composition of the new House, which many observers expect the Democrats to control. But if the Democrats have a majority of members while Republicans have a (narrow) majority of state delegations, it is not so simple.

    If Democrats have a majority of members in the House, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) will be elected speaker and the Democrats will get to make the rules of the what the Twelfth Amendment quaintly calls a "contingent election." What could the majority do to throw sand in the gears of government? The Democrats could make a rule forcing all members to cast a secret ballot for president. Then the clerk of the House would open all the sealed ballots, sort them by state, and see who carried each state. It is widely known that many Republicans despise Donald Trump. They support him in public because they are afraid of the consequences, but in a secret ballot, some of them might vote for the No Labels candidate if he is a Republican. If No Labels can sign up, say Larry Hogan or Gov. Chris Sununu (R-NH) as their candidate, the No Labels candidate could get votes in the contingent election from Republicans who despise Trump. That could get the number of states voting for Trump below 26. All it would take is for one close state to flip. For example, Arizona is currently 3D, 6R. Suppose the Democrats knock off one Republican in 2024 and make it 4D, 5R, and one of the Arizona Republicans votes secretly for the No Labels candidate. Then the vote would be Biden 4, Trump 4, No Labels 1, so Arizona would be eliminated and the Republicans would have only 25 votes—not enough to win.

    Also, the Democratic House could make a rule stating that a vote from a state counts only if a majority (not a plurality) of the representatives vote for one candidate. So if Kansas voted Trump 2, Biden 1, No Labels 1, it would lose its vote, even though Trump had a plurality (but not a majority). The Constitution gives each chamber the power to make its own rules, so it is unlikely that the Supreme Court would tell the House what its rules should be. And even if it did, the House might ignore the decision on the grounds that the Constitution is explicit in giving each chamber the power to make its own rules, so Supreme Court, kindly butt out.

    Additionally, the Fourteenth Amendment says that folks who took part in an insurrection against the United States are disqualified, but it doesn't say who gets to make the call. Suppose the House decides: "We do!" Consequently, all votes for Trump are discarded. If you are excited/dismayed by the possibility of a contingent election, this report on the matter by a group called United to Protect Democracy might supply some interesting bedtime reading matter. Among other topics besides contingent elections that it covers is faithless electors. They seem to crop up from time to time and in a close election with unpopular candidates, there could be a few.

    In the event of a contingent election, if no candidate gets 26 votes in the House, then nobody is elected president. In that case, the person elected by the Senate as vice president acts as president, potentially until Jan. 3, 2027, when a new House is seated. The House gets to choose among the top three electoral vote getters but the Senate gets to choose between only the top two. That means the Senate gets to choose between only the Democratic and the Republican veep candidates. The No Labels candidate for veep will not be on the Senate ballot. If the Democrats manage to hold the Senate, then Kamala Harris could get to sit in the big chair for at least 2 years. If the Republicans win the Senate, Trump's running mate could get to sit in the big chair. Acting President Kristi Noem or Kari Lake, anyone? If the Senate is split 50-50 and can't pick a veep, the speaker of the House acts as president. (V)
    _______

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