As things now stand, Biden is going to exactly match Trump’s 306 Electoral College wins in 2016, which is 36 more than the 270 needed for the Presidency. This means that Trump’s legal challenges would have to reverse 38 of these votes. Why 38? Because at 37 he and Biden would be tied at 269 each, in which case the matter goes to the Democrat majority in the House. The number of reversals that could even make it to the Supreme Court is well under that number. So Trump can’t hope for a second term. Why then is he squandering any of his tee times on this nonsense?
The charitable interpretation is that he wants to see certain issues resolved, not for 2020, but for the enlightenment of future elections. But that wouldn’t explain why he’s been unwilling to concede this one. So the speculation has been that he’s going to try to pull off something that’s more constitutionally questionable, if not downright unanswerable. If so, that’s going to lead to an interesting scene at the gate to the White House at noon on January 20th, in the wake of which, no matter how it goes down, there’a going to be more than a few people spending more than a few years in military or civilian prisons.
I remain cautiously convinced that nothing of the sort is going to happen. Like Richard Nixon before him, Donald Trump will vacate the premises on his own steam. Into obscurity? Perhaps not. But though he might try to play kingmaker, he will not be the GOP nominee in 2024. And without Trump, it’s doubtful that Trumpism has much of a future in American politics.
Of course I stupidly said the same thing four years ago. So if I were you – hell, even if I were me, which to my embarrassment I am – I wouldn’t take any of my own prognostications to the bank. Given the number of my prognosticatory cheques that have bounced lately, it’s a wonder why I keep writing them.