Stealing an election in broad daylight

drummerboy said:

What is it about the modern Republican party that makes you think they wouldn't all climb on board if there was half a chance of victory? They're only staying away now because the "case" being made is embarrassingly bad and weak.

That it's gotten this much support should scare the crap out of all of us.

What is it about the modern Republican Party that’s preventing them all from climbing on board to protect their flanks* when they know there’s no accountabilty because it’ll never come to an overturn? Why isn’t that the cynical play you’d expect?

These are among the questions getting between me and clarity, which was why I asked.

* ETA: Or cater to the base, if you think that’s more accurate.


what part of "They're only staying away now because the "case" being made is embarrassingly bad and weak." do you not understand?


also, to answer your question more directly, most R's ARE protecting their flanks by giving wishy-washy answers about due process; having the right to contest; blah blah blah. Only a handful have offered the full-throated condemnation that the effort deserves.


drummerboy said:

what part of "They're only staying away now because the "case" being made is embarrassingly bad and weak." do you not understand?

This part: When does the case become strong enough for them to switch?


Only a handful have offered the full-throated condemnation that the effort deserves.

For now, a handful are enough to keep everything from riding on the House. I could see pressure on them to switch intensifying if the House were in Republican hands. I could see pressure on them to hold firm intensifying at the same time. It’s not clear to me how that would tilt.


And now we can hear Trump on tape, being the lying con man he always was, and always will be. 


Listen to Trump's tone of voice in that recording.

Listen to the selfish assumption in his tone, that he believes he can just bully anybody to invent a false reality for his benefit.


Jan. 6 is going to be a s---tstorm. Four Trump rallies in DC, including the Proud Boys, and the circus in Congress.  Trump is encouraging a blood bath. 


nohero said:

Listen to Trump's tone of voice in that recording.

Listen to the selfish assumption in his tone, that he believes he can just bully anybody to invent a false reality for his benefit.

I think he's delusional. Its chilling.

I have to credit Raffensperger for politely listening to Trump's hour long rant. But then he's a politician. 

I would have cut Trump's rant with "respectfully, Mr. President, I hope you will be getting the professional help you are in need of."


That’s how desperate he is. We are witnessing the complete meltdown of a mad man. 


nohero said:

Listen to Trump's tone of voice in that recording.

Listen to the selfish assumption in his tone, that he believes he can just bully anybody to invent a false reality for his benefit.

He has been doing this all his life, and he mostly got away with it. I think he really believes he can bully his way out of any situation he doesn't like. I don't think he is going to get away with it this time, but once he realizes that he will go scorched earth and try to inflict maximum damage to the country (friend or foe alike).




DaveSchmidt said:

What is it about the modern Republican Party that’s preventing them all from climbing on board to protect their flanks* when they know there’s no accountabilty because it’ll never come to an overturn? Why isn’t that the cynical play you’d expect?

These are among the questions getting between me and clarity, which was why I asked.

* ETA: Or cater to the base, if you think that’s more accurate.

 It think some of them simply don't want to look like complete asshats. Others may have some modicum of integrity. And some may be smart enough to know that "the base" is not the entire electorate.

What would really happen in this Country if one candidate clearly won the popular vote overwhelmingly and the Electoral Vote by a substantial margin and the Congress just overturned it? Might there be a Civil War or some sort of massive reaction? 


STANV said:

What would really happen in this Country if one candidate clearly won the popular vote overwhelmingly and the Electoral Vote by a substantial margin and the Congress just overturned it? Might there be a Civil War or some sort of massive reaction? 

I’d list that among the disincentives for going through with it if, unlike this time, a party faced the choice of putting up or shutting up.


STANV said:

cramer said:

 https://www.politico.com/news/2021/01/03/trump-georgia-election-454122

It's a crime but he'll get away with it.

Of course he will.  Even if he pardons himself, that won't apply to any state crimes, and the Georgia statute is clear that he committed a crime. But I can't imagine Georigia prosecuting him. 

https://www.politico.com/news/2021/01/03/trump-georgia-election-454122


DaveSchmidt said:

What makes it clear that the 11 senators objecting to the electoral vote would get a majority to go along with them?

 what so far has led you to believe they wouldn't? Whoever thought we'd get this close to it?


DaveSchmidt said:

For now, a handful are enough to keep everything from riding on the House. I could see pressure on them to switch intensifying if the House were in Republican hands. I could see pressure on them to hold firm intensifying at the same time. It’s not clear to me how that would tilt.

 the fact that the law allows for the possibility should be chilling to everyone. 

That's the point I'm trying to make.


ml1 said:

what so far has led you to believe they wouldn't? Whoever thought we'd get this close to it?

Our opinions probably differ on how far the Senate would go if there was any chance of success. Our opinions also probably differ on the disincentive strength of the potential consequences that STANV raised.

the fact that the law allows for the possibility should be chilling to everyone.

As long as we have the Electoral College, how would you shore it up in a case like this? If a couple of legislatures had indeed sent their own slate of electors contrary to the popular vote in their states, for instance, what recourse should Congress have?


DaveSchmidt said:

ml1 said:

what so far has led you to believe they wouldn't? Whoever thought we'd get this close to it?

Our opinions probably differ on how far the Senate would go if there was any chance of success. Our opinions also probably differ on the disincentive strength of the potential consequences that STANV raised.

the fact that the law allows for the possibility should be chilling to everyone.

As long as we have the Electoral College, how would you shore it up in a case like this? If a couple of legislatures had indeed sent their own slate of electors contrary to the popular vote in their states, for instance, what recourse should Congress have?

that's really just a very strong case for abolition of the Electoral College.

This entire travesty is laying bare how precarious our democratic processes are.


ml1 said:

that's really just a very strong case for abolition of the Electoral College.

This entire travesty is laying bare how precarious our democratic processes are.

How would a popular-vote direct presidential election avoid the same issue? Results still need to be certified somehow; what certification process would be immune to manipulation by participants intent on overturning an outcome? (Procedurally, what’s stopping Georgia’s Department of State from throwing out Democratic victories in the Senate races tomorrow?)

I think nohero, in an earlier comment here, accurately laid the onus on our commitment to democracy. If that holds, elections work. If it doesn’t, there’s no foolproof way to protect them.


DaveSchmidt said:

I think nohero, in an earlier comment here, accurately laid the onus on our commitment to democracy. If that holds, elections work. If it doesn’t, there’s no foolproof way to protect them.

All it took was one con man to break our democratic system?


DaveSchmidt said:


I think nohero, in an earlier comment here, accurately laid the onus on our commitment to democracy. If that holds, elections work. If it doesn’t, there’s no foolproof way to protect them.

  ^^

This is why questions of democratic legitimacy are more than just academic political science. And from that perspective, I think you can make an good argument against the electoral college.

Strengthening democratic legitimacy can't stop a situation like the current one, where the losing party is determined to reject the votes of the election, but it does make it less likely to succeed. Even given our current crisis of democracy, we see committed Republicans like GA SoS Raffensperger refusing to go along with their party. Strengthening our democracy makes it easier for people like Raffensperger to resist anti-democratic demands like Trump's.


basil said:

DaveSchmidt said:

I think nohero, in an earlier comment here, accurately laid the onus on our commitment to democracy. If that holds, elections work. If it doesn’t, there’s no foolproof way to protect them.

All it took was one con man to break our democratic system?

 Human institutions are simultaneously resilient and fragile things.


PVW said:

basil said:

All it took was one con man to break our democratic system?

 Human institutions are simultaneously resilient and fragile things.

Agreed. The electoral system didn’t break.


DaveSchmidt said:

PVW said:

basil said:

All it took was one con man to break our democratic system?

 Human institutions are simultaneously resilient and fragile things.

Agreed. The electoral system didn’t break.

Fair enough. I guess my point is not so much that the system broke, but that the system is not a very good system if you want to have fair and democratic elections. To me, a fair and democratic election is where everyone has the same access to the voting process, everyone's vote counts the same, and whoever gets the most votes wins. Our Presidential elections check none of these boxes.


DaveSchmidt said:

How would a popular-vote direct presidential election avoid the same issue? Results still need to be certified somehow; what certification process would be immune to manipulation by participants intent on overturning an outcome? (Procedurally, what’s stopping Georgia’s Department of State from throwing out Democratic victories in the Senate races tomorrow?)

I think nohero, in an earlier comment here, accurately laid the onus on our commitment to democracy. If that holds, elections work. If it doesn’t, there’s no foolproof way to protect them.

no one is suggesting there can be a foolproof way to protect them.  I'm only suggesting that given that Trump and the GOP have laid bare a really easy way to flip an election if one party holds both the House and the Senate, maybe someone should suggest fixing that.


DaveSchmidt said:

ml1 said:

that's really just a very strong case for abolition of the Electoral College.

This entire travesty is laying bare how precarious our democratic processes are.

How would a popular-vote direct presidential election avoid the same issue?


You might want to reconsider that thought.

ml1 said:

no one is suggesting there can be a foolproof way to protect them.  I'm only suggesting that given that Trump and the GOP have laid bare a really easy way to flip an election if one party holds both the House and the Senate, maybe someone should suggest fixing that.

The floor remains open for suggestions (beyond eliminating the Electoral College).


drummerboy said:

DaveSchmidt said:

How would a popular-vote direct presidential election avoid the same issue? 

You might want to reconsider that thought.

OK, I have. What am I missing? How would eliminating the Electoral College safeguard certification from attempts to reverse results?


DaveSchmidt said:

ml1 said:

no one is suggesting there can be a foolproof way to protect them.  I'm only suggesting that given that Trump and the GOP have laid bare a really easy way to flip an election if one party holds both the House and the Senate, maybe someone should suggest fixing that.

The floor remains open for suggestions (beyond eliminating the Electoral College).

 how about a law that says Congress must accept duly certified electors from each state?  Sure there are other ways to cause mischief if people are determined (like states refusing to certify electors representing the voters' choice).  But in a year like this where all 50 states have certified their results, and their electors have cast their legitimate, there should be absolutely no reason to question any state's slate of electors.

And yet we see that the law would allow for Trump to be legally elected president if a majority of the House and Senate chose to do so.  That shouldn't be legal, and we shouldn't have to count on the good faith of the legislative majority to do the right thing.


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