Trump Is Deliberately Eroding Faith In Democracy. The GOP Is Helping.
Written by Huffingtonpost on November 6, 2020
When the historical past books are written, they’ll mirror that Donald Trump did all the pieces he might to delegitimize the 2020 presidential election as he headed towards a powerful loss.
It shouldn’t be misplaced in these pages that elected Republican leaders went proper alongside together with his lies.
As outrageous as Trump’s conduct has been within the days after the Nov. three election, he’s been signaling for months that he would do something, even lie and cheat, to remain in workplace. He’s falsely claimed mail-in ballots result in widespread fraud. His marketing campaign engaged in voter intimidation. He preemptively refused to commit to a peaceable transition of energy. He brazenly inspired folks to hold out political violence on his behalf. He vowed authorized challenges to stop states from counting ballots after Election Day.
What’s arguably extra alarming is that Trump’s efforts to undermine folks’s religion within the election are being echoed by GOP leaders in Congress, longtime politicians who know the president is being dishonest. They merely care extra about not upsetting Trump’s base of supporters for their very own political functions.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Judiciary Committee and a longtime ally to Trump, refused on Thursday to dismiss the concept the Pennsylvania legislature ought to ignore its election outcomes and appoint pro-Trump electors anyway, primarily based on false conspiracy theories about fraud. His feedback got here as Democratic nominee Joe Biden pulled forward within the pivotal state as extra ballots have been counted.
“Every thing ought to be on the desk,” Graham instructed Fox Information’ Sean Hannity. “Philadelphia elections are crooked as a snake,” he added, with out citing any proof that “useless folks” and individuals who don’t dwell in Pennsylvania have solid ballots there.
Later in the identical program, Graham’s colleague from Texas — and the runner-up within the 2016 presidential major — joined the GOP delegitimization marketing campaign.
“I’m indignant. The American individuals are proper to be indignant. We want observers. Now,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) stated whereas tweeting a clip of himself fuming on Fox Information that Democrats are being “lawless” and attempting to “steal the election” in Pennsylvania.
However there isn’t a proof of ballot watchers being denied entry to poll counting there. The truth is, folks on the scene stated ballot watchers there have had entry all alongside.
“The President and his marketing campaign representatives had falsely claimed all through the day that their representatives weren’t allowed within the room. However their counsel admitted on the listening to, after questions from the courtroom, that they’d a number of representatives within the room,” reads a assertion Thursday from Philadelphia’s bipartisan Fee on Elections.
“The truth is, they’d not less than 19 get together representatives as observers within the Conference Middle this afternoon, and greater than 15 within the room whereas the case was being heard this night.”
The second-ranked Republican in Congress, Home Minority Chief Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), straight-up lied that Trump had already gained the election and dangerously urged his supporters to reject the legitimacy of the outcome if Biden wins.
“President Trump gained this election,” McCarthy falsely acknowledged in a Thursday interview with Fox Information’ Laura Ingraham. “Everybody who’s listening: Don’t be quiet. Don’t be silent about this. We can not enable this to occur earlier than our very eyes.”
Even after it grew to become clear that Biden was on the verge of locking up the election by profitable Pennsylvania, McCarthy insisted that folks preserve combating the outcome.
“Removed from over,” the GOP chief tweeted Friday afternoon. “Republicans is not going to again down from this battle.”
Senate Majority Chief Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) responded Friday with laughter and a request that folks learn his Twitter feed when requested about Trump’s false allegations of voter fraud.
“I despatched out a tweet this morning that covers my ideas in regards to the nationwide scenario,” McConnell instructed Kentucky reporters. “I’ve lined the topic already this morning.”
His tweet didn’t say a lot, aside from “each authorized vote ought to be counted” ― a phrase Republicans like McCarthy are utilizing to recommend that this isn’t already taking place, which it’s. McConnell additionally stated that every one sides ought to be capable to observe the method, which, once more, is already taking place.
In the meantime, Trump marketing campaign surrogates like former appearing Director of Nationwide Intelligence Ric Grennell are holding public occasions in key areas like Las Vegas, the place ballots are nonetheless being counted, to whip up crowds of die-hard Trump supporters with false claims of voter fraud and a scarcity of election observers. (Grenell fled in a van on Thursday when reporters requested for proof of his claims).
Day by day that passes with no official outcome and with Republicans making outlandish claims in regards to the course of, extra pro-Trump demonstrators seem on the streets outdoors state capitols and ballot-counting facilities. The FBI and Philadelphia police arrested two armed males Thursday night time who reportedly had plans to assault the counting heart in that metropolis.
That is each predictable and but alarming. Dr. Pippa Norris on Republicans mendacity about voter fraud to assist Trump
It’s tough to gauge how damaging this nonsense will in the end be for America’s democratic establishments and folks’s religion in them. However there’s cause to be involved about GOP leaders demonstrating loyalty to Trump above all else ― a purple flag of creeping authoritarianism, stated Dr. Pippa Norris, the Paul F. McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics on the John F. Kennedy Faculty of Authorities at Harvard College and director of The Electoral Integrity Challenge. She stated it displays a rising development of Republicans attempting to govern guidelines to their partisan benefit.
“That is each predictable and but alarming,” Norris stated in an e-mail. “Over the past decade, even earlier than Trump, the Republican Occasion has moved in direction of authoritarian values, difficult fundamental democratic norms and rules.”
Steven Levitsky, the creator of “How Democracies Die,” a contemporary historical past of wholesome democracies that slid into autocracy, stated he has been anxious for months about this very state of affairs enjoying out: Republicans lining up behind Trump’s fraud claims in an in depth election.
However now, he says, he’s not so anxious. He factors to the truth that not less than some Republican leaders have publicly pushed again on Trump’s claims of fraud, like Sens. Marco Rubio (Fla.), Pat Toomey (Pa.) and Mitt Romney (Utah).
“Even the conduct of Fox Information suggests to me that the Republicans will not be ready to make this soar,” stated Levitsky, referring to Fox Information calling Arizona for Biden, whilst Trump protests. “Some [Republicans] clearly will, but when the get together splits and key gamers defect, Trump will get nowhere.”
Requested whether it is alarming to him nonetheless to see folks like McConnell and McCarthy, the highest Republicans within the Home and Senate, parroting the president’s lies about fraud, Levitsky stated he isn’t shedding sleep over it.
“I don’t assume Trump has the capability to drag it off,” he added. “To date, his efforts have been pathetic.”
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