Most “experts” characterized the 2016 Presidential election as the ugliest in our nation’s history. There was method to the madness, at least on the part of the Trump campaign. The idea was to make the election SO ugly that it would disgust enough people from voting to give Donald Trump at least a chance at victory. It was a case of planned voter suppression. Trump saw the Presidency as a money machine that could pad the coffers of the Trump financial empire with even more filthy lucre. For a fundamentally greedy man this was excuse enough to try to ruin the American electoral system. But if the 2016 election was bad, the 2020 election looks to be MUCH worse.
Why? It can be summed up in one word, desperation. For one thing, the loss of the White House will have dire consequences for the whole Trump clan and the Republican Party to boot. For Trump, the steady stream of ill-gotten goods would come to a crashing halt and we all know how much money means to the Donald. Who knows what could happen to the whole Trump aggregation? Why Don Jr., Eric, Ivanka, and Jared might even be forced to seek out honest employment.
Of course, the real victim of a Trump defeat in the 2020 election would be the Donald himself. No longer protected by the stone wall of the Presidency, Donald Trump might be forced to wear an orange jump suit for the rest of his life, and after all, Donald is SUCH a fashion plate. Gone would be the protective armor of executive privilege. Big Donald and all the assorted little Trumps and their minions would be forced to answer a lot of incriminating questions. Think of it, we might even find out just what dirty deeds Vladimir Putin is holding over the entire Trump empire, things like money laundering and who knows what else?
For Republicans, the loss of the White House might usher in the beginning of the end of the party itself. Their stranglehold on the Supreme Court would be broken, depending of course on the state of the health of Justices Ginsberg and Breyer over the next year and a half. The Congress could be swept away plus some additional state legislatures, which would only make gerrymandering that much more difficult for them. Faced with such losses, it’s conceivable that the Republicans might resort to even dirtier gutter politics than before. Why, they might even call Kamala Harris’ status as a genuine African American into question. desperation is such a compelling thing.
I mention all this because I believe that forewarned is forearmed. Trump’s gutter strategy in 2016 caught us by surprise. He managed to significantly suppress the black and Latino vote and the utter ugliness of his campaign had a lot to do with it. We weren’t prepared for such shenanigans. We couldn’t deal with the politics of “Lock Her Up” and “Russia Come And Help Us With Some Dirt On Hillary”. We didn’t know how to deal with the sheer venom that Trump and his merry band of dyspeptic minions brought to that election. Far too many of us just said that the election was so ugly and both candidates so unappealing that we stayed home rather than engage in “hold your nose voting”.
2020 is apt to discourage our political participation even more. For one thing, our esteemed President has once again invited the enemies of American democracy to come in and do their worst to mess up the American electoral system, to divide and conquer by race, gender, sexual preference, or class. That’s why we have to be prepared. We have to recognize these tactics for what they are, the dying embers of the politics of self-destruction. Russia and China understand that they can’t take us down as a country in a fair fight so they will once again attempt to use our weaknesses against us. We can’t let it happen again!!
Filed under: Politics