Americans Won't Accept Election Delay
Updated: Jul 31, 2020
Donald Trump is getting desperate.
Facing disastrous poll numbers, a cratering economy, a fatal virus that has spiraled out of control and months of civil unrest, the president tweeted Thursday morning that it might be necessary to delay November’s presidential election.
There is no chance the American people will stand for that.
We have allowed Trump to get away with a lot. The man has no ethical standards, he acts like he is above the law and he has trampled on our cherished institutions for the better part of almost four years. But if he thinks Americans won’t rise up in furious anger if he proceeds with this threat, then he is straight delusional.
At minimum, millions of Americans will take to the streets in cities and towns across the nation in demonstrations that will make the George Floyd protests seem tame by comparison. At worst, there will be open insurrection against the government.
Trump’s rationale is that mail-in voting will lead to an inaccurate and fraudulent election, a prevarication that has been debunked time and again.
“Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???” Trump tweeted at around 9 a.m. Eastern time Thursday morning.
This tweet was timed almost to the moment it was announced that the nation’s economic activity plummeted by 32.9 percent in the second quarter. That freefall is a direct result of a COVID-19 pandemic that has gotten out of control because of the president’s gross mismanagement. More than 153,000 people are dead, and Trump can barely be bothered to wear a mask.
Meanwhile, millions of workers are filing for first-time unemployment insurance every week, and the Republican-led Senate continues to dither on extended enhanced federal benefits.
Under this backdrop, Democratic challenger Joe Biden, who has been scarcely seen in public for months, is crushing the president in every legitimate national poll, and in most state polls as well. Several reputable services have Biden ahead by double-digit margins nationally, and even in some supposed swing states.
It seems Trump does not understand just how unpopular he is with the American people. Only a popular leader could threaten to delay an election in a functioning democracy and have the support to potentially get away with it. In this country, at this moment, under this president, such an action will lead to chaos in a manner unlike anything any of us has seen in our lifetimes.
For the uninitiated, it would take an act of Congress to move the election off the first Tuesday in November. But Donald Trump seems to be making his own rules these days.
At no point in the history of the United States has an election been delayed. Not during the Civil War. Not during the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918. Not during World War II. The mere suggestion of it is unfathomable.
It is at this moment that Republicans in Congress must finally put their collective feet down. Do they support American democracy, or do they support a Donald Trump dictatorship?
If they don’t put a stop to it, the people most certainly will.