Joe Biden won the presidential election, a fact that Donald Trump and the other Republicans refuse to acknowledge.
There are concerns that the president and the other Republicans will do their best to stay in power. Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State, said, “There will be a smooth transition to the Trump administration again.” He said last week. William Barr Attorney General Also authorized federal prosecutors To start investigating electoral irregularities, a step that prompted the head of the Electoral Crimes Unit at the Ministry of Justice to step down from his post and move to another position. On Tuesday, Trump fired Christopher Krebs, the director of the federal agency that ensured the credibility of the 2020 elections and pushed back the president’s unfounded allegations of voter fraud.
However, despite all of Trump’s machinations, he is unlikely to find a way to stay in power or stage a coup. Here is an explanation of why:
Trump refuses to accept Joe Biden winning the presidential election. Is there a constitutional way for him to overthrow and remain in office for another term?
Not right. The Electoral College Meet on December 14th To vote for president, nearly every state uses the statewide popular vote to distribute its electors. Biden is expected to win the more than 270 electoral votes he would need to become president. His victory is not dependent on one state, and he may have an insurmountable advance in Michigan, Nevada, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Arizona.
There is a long-standing legal theory, Brought up by the Republicans Before an election, Republican-friendly legislatures in places like Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania could ignore the popular vote in their states and designate their electors. Federal law permits legislatures to do so if states haveFailed to make a decision“By the day of the Electoral College meeting. But there is no evidence of systematic fraud of wrongdoing in any country, and Biden’s leadership margins in these places make it clear that states have in fact made a choice.
“If the state continues to follow the rule of law, I don’t see any reasonable constitutional path forward for Trump to remain president except for new evidence of massive failure of the multi-state election system,” said Richard Hasen, a law professor at the university from California, Irvine, an election specialist , In an email. “It would be a naked and undemocratic grab of power to try to use state legislatures to circumvent the choice of voters and I don’t expect that to happen.”
For lawmakers in one state, choosing to bypass the apparent will of its constituents in this way would be extraordinary and potentially spark protest. For Trump to win the electoral college, many states would have to take this extraordinary step, a move that would cause a severe backlash and a real crisis for democracy across the country.
“There is a strange fascination with the various dark scenarios imagined, perhaps involving the rebellious state legislatures, but this is a miserable fiction more than anything possible,” said Richard Bilds, a professor of law at New York University. “The irony or the tragedy is that we managed to have very smooth elections, with record turnout, under very difficult conditions – however, a large portion of the president’s supporters are now convinced that the process was flawed.”
Is there any indication that Republicans in these important states would agree to this?
Shortly after Election Day, Jake Corman, the top Republican in the Pennsylvania Senate, indicated that his partyFollow the law“In Pennsylvania, which requires electors to be awarded the winner of the popular vote. In October EditorialCorman said that the state legislature “has no and will not have a hand in selecting state presidential electors or in determining the outcome of the presidential election.”
Last week, Republicans in Pennsylvania Legislature They said they wanted to investigate allegations of voter fraud. There is no evidence of irregularities prevalent in the state, but the move is disturbing as it could be the start of an attempt to undermine the state’s popular vote results. But in a severe blow to the president’s legal efforts, the state Supreme Court ruled that Philadelphia election officials had not incorrectly prevented the Trump campaign from monitoring the mail count.
Is this in any way related to Trump’s lawsuits?
Trump’s campaign has it Foot Slow than Legally questionable The suits since Election Day. The purpose of these lawsuits does not appear to be actually to overturn the election results, but rather to try to create uncertainty and draw out the count.
Each state has its own deadlines for certifying election results which are then used to allocate its own Electoral College votes. In at least two states, Pennsylvania And the MichiganThe Trump campaign seeks to prevent officials from certifying the results.
This approval timeline is important because federal law states that as long as the election results are completed by December 8 this year, the outcome is “decisive.” This provides a safeguard against the Congress, which is responsible for counting the Electoral College votes, from the second-guessing of the election results. By delaying the process, the Trump campaign may seek to bypass this deadline and create more room for maneuver to guess the outcome.
Even if that was the hope of the Trump campaign, Bildiz said, the courts were unlikely to step in.
He said, “Countries will begin to certify their vote totals that start in less than 10 days, and there is no basis in the cases submitted so far to the courts to stop this process.”
Suppose the worst-case scenario pays off and that Republican-led legislatures overwhelm the will of the people in several states. Are there any guarantees to stop Trump?
Yes. Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Nevada all have Democratic governors refusing to endorse a group of Trump voters with the popular vote clearly showing Biden winning their state. Instead, they will introduce the electors Biden would be entitled to as the winners of the popular vote.
After that, it is the responsibility of Congress, tasked with counting votes from the Electoral College, to decide what to do. The law that defines the process for how Congress handles a conflict in voters from its own country Very bafflingBut experts believe the governor-backed list is Legally sound. There is a competing theory that the president of the Senate, Mike Pence, could have control of the process. A dispute over voters between the House and Senate is the worst-case scenario, and the US Supreme Court will likely be called upon to intervene.
Regardless of the length of the conflict, the constitution sets one deadline. Even if the count continues, the presidential and vice presidential terms end at noon on January 20. At this point, if there is no final result in the race, the Speaker of the House – perhaps Nancy Pelosi – will become the acting president.