Common Dreams - December 14, 2021
"Trump's Next Coup Has Already Begun…" is the title of an article in the Atlantic, just out, by Barton Gellman, a Pulitzer Prize winner and author of many groundbreaking exposés. He describes the various maneuvers that Trump-driven Republican operatives and state legislators are developing to overturn elections whose voters elected Democrats from states with Republican governors and state legislatures. Georgia fit that profile in 2020—electing two Democratic senators in a state with a Republican legislature and governor.
Getting ready for 2024, the Georgia GOP legislature has stripped the election-certifying Secretary of State, Brad Raffensperger, of his authority to oversee future election certifications. The legislature has also given itself the unbridled authority to fire county election officials. With Trump howling his lies and backing his minion candidates, they created a climate that is intimidating scores of terrified election-precinct volunteers to quit.
Added to this are GOP-passed voter suppression laws and selectively drawn election districts that discriminate against minorities—both before the vote (purges, arbitrary disqualifications), during the vote (diminishing absentee voting, and narrowing dates for their delivery), and after the election in miscounting and falsely declaring fraud.
The ultimate lethal blow to democratic elections, should the GOP lose, is simply to have the partisan GOP majority legislators benefiting from demonically-drawn gerrymandered electoral districts, declare by fiat the elections a fraud, and replace the Democratic Party's voter chosen electors with GOP chosen electors in the legislature.
Now take this as a pattern demolishing majority voters' choice to 14 other GOP-controlled states, greased by Trumpian lies and routing money to his chosen candidate's intent on overturning majority rule, add Fox News bullhorns and talk radio Trumpsters and you have the apparatus for fascistic takeovers. Tragically, a majority of the U.S. Supreme Court Justices—three selected by Trump—has no problem with his usurpation of the American Republic. All this and more micro-repression is broadcast by zillions of ugly, vicious, and anonymous rants over the Internet enabled by the profiteering social media corporations like Facebook.
Anonymous, vicious, violent email and Twitter traffic is the most underreported cause of anxiety, fear, and dread undermining honest Americans working, mostly as volunteers, the machinery of local, state, and national elections, with dedicated public servants. These people are not allowed to know the names behind the anonymous cowardly, vitriol slamming against them, their families, and children.
What are the institutions—public and civic—that could roll back this fast-approaching U.S.-style fascism with the snarling visage of serial criminal and constitutional violator, Donald J. Trump?
1. First is the Congress. Democrats impeached Trump over the Ukraine extortion but left on the table eleven other impeachable counts, including those with kitchen-table impacts (See Congressional Record, December 18, 2019).
All that is going on to deal with Trump's abuses in any focused way on Capitol Hill, controlled by Democrats, is the House's January 6th investigation. So far as is known, this Select Committee is NOT going to subpoena the star witnesses—Donald Trump and Mike Pence. So far, the Congress is feeble, not a Rock of Gibraltar thwarting the Trumpian dictators. ...
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