Ever since the United States gained independence, tradition states that whoever wins the election, wins the White House and the Presidency. There have been cases where candidates lose the popular vote but still win the electoral college, like Donald Trump vs Hillary Clinton and George W. Bush vs Al Gore. However, we’re living in unprecedented times, under an unprecedented US President. And there are ways with which Trump can lose the 2020 US Elections in the electoral college too, but still become President of the United States!
How Donald Trump can become President even after losing the elections:
- He starts by sowing suspicion in the fairness and of the elections, which he has done since 2015. Moreover, this year he did it by questioning the safety of postal voting.
- He creates mayhem on election day, by sending his army of white supremacists to frighten voters. They include both non-white and voters in Democratic districts. These are the same white supremacists that Trump told to “stand back and stand by” in his first Presidential debate against Joe Biden.
- Trump declares himself the winner prematurely on provisional results, without waiting for mail-in-ballots and calling them inaccurate or rigged.
- Trump’s army of lawyers launches lawsuits to halt and discredit mail-in-ballots. He has also deprived the American postal service off of necessary funds. And he can use several technicalities in the law for the lawsuits. And so, the federal government opens investigations on irregularities that they themselves caused.
The battle then shifts to the Congress
- This one depends on the outcome of the Senate and House of Representatives elections. But, if Republicans control both these houses, or have enough votes at least for control, they can do the same. They assign their electoral votes to Trump and disqualify all counting of votes after election day as “illegitimate”. The article further states:
In Bush v. Gore the Supreme Court ruled that states can take back the power to appoint electors at any time. Where there are Democratic governors, they veto the Republican legislatures’ appointments, and appoint their own slate of electors instead: the ones who have won the popular vote. Congress receives two different lists of appointees from such states.
- Violence pursues across the US and Donald Trump declares a state of emergency.
- Congress decides which of the appointees sent by the states is entitled to vote in the Electoral College. But, that again depends on the results of the elections of the Congress. If none of the candidates get a majority, the House of Representatives decides who the President will be. By then, the elections will change who dominates the house but it’s unclear if outgoing representatives can legally make that decision by delaying the incoming representatives.
- Each and every single one of these technicalities can be challenged in the Supreme Court. And that is where Donald Trump can have a lot of advantages. The Supreme Court currently has 6 Justices appointed by Republican presidents compared to 3 by Democratic. Only 5 can be enough to rule in favor of Trump. That will be the time when the commitment of the judges to uphold democracy will be put into question. On the other side will be their loyalty to their political leanings or the ruling party.
A nightmare of a coup
If this was any other candidate from US History, they would have gladly conceded the election. But, this is Donald Trump we’re talking about. Playing every dirty game in the book is something he specializes in. Therefore, even though these sequences of events sound unlikely, it isn’t anymore unlikely than Donald Trump becoming the President back in 2016. And this will be a deadly blow to American Democracy, regardless of whether you support Joe Biden or Trump in the 2020 US Presidential Elections. America will become an autocracy if this happens. It is up to you if you are willing to give Trump this chance.