Updated: Feb 23, 2020
As the presidential election looms large, several scenarios could play out as the results roll in. None would be good for democracy.
Already we are seeing Russian interference on both sides. While Bernie Sanders (DS-VT) is calling for Russia to stay out of American elections, Trump is denying the evidence of his own intelligence community that Russia is interfering on his behalf.
What is the motivation behind Russia meddling, once again, in our elections? There are several possible scenarios that could play out in the upcoming race.
First, Republicans have sought to torpedo the campaign of former Vice President Joe Biden through their continued attacks on his son, Hunter’s, association with a Ukrainian gas company. These efforts were the motivating cause behind the impeachment of Trump, and also why Republicans voted to acquit.
With Biden potentialiy out of the way, Trump clearly feels he has a better chance at re-election. So, he is stoking the paranoia of Sanders’ supporters by intimating that Democrats are, once again, trying to steal the nomination away from him -- causing another rift in the Democratic Party that will result in his re-election.
Why is Trump so keen to face Sanders?
The answer is obvious. Sanders is a socialist running for the Democratic ticket. By tapping into the long-held anti-socialist fears of many Americans, Trump believes supporting Sanders would ensure his re-election.
With Election Day drawing closer and Russian interference a given, there are several ways the election could play out. And none of these are good for the future of our Democracy.
Trump wins re-election and Republicans maintain their hold on the Senate
In this scenario, Trump, with the assistance of Russia, wins re-election, but not by much. We already have seen how Trump reacts to “winning”. He will use this as an opportunity to further punish his perceived enemies and set the stage for a political dynasty by promoting his son, Don Jr. to a political post.
Republicans in the Senate will continue to ignore the multiple abuses of office as they enjoy their hold on power.
Trump wins re-election but Republicans lose their Senate majority
In this scenario, Trump will attempt to use his judicial appointments to thwart the efforts of Democrats in Congress to hold him accountable. He has long believed that loyalty to him supersedes loyalty to country. This belief will cause him to lash out at judges he had a role in appointing if they rule against him.
The resulting chaos will threaten the balance of power that has been the cornerstone of our Democracy as another impeachment is likely.
Trump loses the election
You may wonder why Russia has sought to interfere with the election on behalf of Democrats. Here is a possible explanation.
If Democrats win, Trump will claim Russian meddling on behalf of the Democratic candidate. He will try to use this carefully manipulated evidence to invalidate the election and refuse to leave office.
The resulting schism could flare into a Civil War, with the heavily armed, NRA-supported right wing on one side and the “victors” on the the left attempting all legal means to ensure the integrity of the electoral process.
Whatever the results, we could be facing a nightmare. Let’s hope none of these come to pass.