It seems fairly likely that it is not going to be possible to have a valid general election in America in 2020.
The covid plague and its prerequisite draconian containment and avoidance counter-measures make primaries, conventions and general elections potentially subject to question as to their validity.
If we didn’t have a genuinely sinister being masquerading as president, and if we didn’t have a Senate controlled by a party in thrall to the sinister one, and lead by a being who is the cosmic synthesis of the word “amoral” we might, as citizens, expect for the House, the Senate and the President (capitalized here because of the generic use of the word in this sentence and therefore given its due reverence since being generic it has no relation to its current faux manifestation) to come up with some partisan neutral and country-wide acceptable method of providing a Presidential function and a Legislative function until the virus that besets us is vanquished.
But that is not possible: the republicans see the chance to make donnie a permanent fixture, and therefore, their reign of terror coordinately permanent.
So the Republic, as I have said every day since that bleak early day in November 2016, is in touch and go status.
This kind of thing has happened before – one of the main threads of the debate and discussion of the Convention of 1787 was that very problem: how do we keep what happened to Rome from happening to us.
The answer was a Constitution that separated power and had checks and balances.
But, it turns out, when 77,000 voters in four states vote in such a manner that the gerrymander of the Electoral College massively ignores the obvious will of the popular majority, a set of carefully placed and aligned dominos all fall down.
And we get donnie and Mitch, and Devin, and Kevin.
They can say anything they want, like “due to the dire nature of our circumstances and our inability to have a credible election, the only alternative is to continue with the current president and the current congress for the foreseeable future”.
And when they say it, they can vote it in.
The House can’t stop them; if the House doesn’t cooperate the Senate can just shut down any legislative action of any sort forever.
That’s easy; they don’t care about doing anything anyway; they just want to remain in power.
The House could mount an impeachment resolution, but we know how that would come out.
So, I think covid-19 is probably the end of the Republic as we grew up to know it.
There will remain a Putinesque rump, but that is all there will be.
And we can thank “The Base”.
I wish I knew if better education, or just free basic anger management counselling for “The Base” would have avoided this outcome.