US Elections: Donald Trump’s “Automatic Majority”

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The North American president hurries the process so that the Supreme Court has 6 conservative judges and three liberal ones. If the election is judicialized, it is assumed that this majority will give him victory. USA. gives for that institutional precariousness?

In the November elections, at least three scenarios can happen: one very safe, another relatively safe and the third, a lottery, a diplomatic friend tells this chronicler from the US. Insurance is that democrat Joe Biden will win the majority vote, as has happened with that force in seven of the last elections, something never seen since 1828 when the current party system was formed. The not so sure, but not at all improbable, is that the Democrats increase their strength in Deputies, which they have controlled for two years, and that grind Republicans their slim majority of three seats in the Senate that renews a third of the camera. The lottery is that anything can happen in the elections, whether one wins or the other or both win. That is, there is no clear winner.

The weaknesses and insecurities of Donald Trump in the face of this electoral examination are exposed by the polls that keep him below his adversary or the closed competition that is announced in a large part of the handful of States where the name of the future president will be defined. Biden’s sticks with his image limitations, but maybe the most relevant is the Hispanic vote less faithful than that of the black minority in central states like Florida, that Trump militates by bombarding Castro’s Cuba with sanctions or raising Venezuela on the agenda at the hands of his Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo. Everything is for the votes.

That strategy, however, has not yet given the ruling party the results it expects. The latest St Pete Polls poll for Florida Politics found an increase in the pro-Democrat Hispanic vote in that state with a difference of 56% to 41%, greater than 15 days ago and three points in the total population. But for observers, such as the diplomat we cited, the absence in the Democratic Convention of relevant figures from that Latino minority such as Julián Castro, former Secretary of Housing for Barack Obama. o Kevin de León, former leader of the Senate in California, could indicate or anticipate much more against Biden than meets the eye.

The deep uncertainty about what may happen doesn’t just overwhelm Democrats. It is also reflected by the White House with its urgency to fill the vacancy in the Supreme Court that left the death of the prestigious judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The rush is explained on several levels. It is not clear, as we say, that Republicans have forward secured control of the Senate, where that crucial appointment is defined. Thus, the expedited resolution of Ginsburg’s successor is explained in that a new conservative figure on the court would increase the majority of that sector to six votes over the minimum three of the members of the liberal sector where the modern and egalitarian thought of the missing judge was reflected.

A turn of that magnitude would nullify the arbitration capacity that the President of the Court, the moderate conservative John Roberts, had been exercising between the two wings, as he pointed out to Clarion in Washington the academic Dick Howard. That difference, in the view of the White House, would be key if in the election lottery there is no clear winner and the crisis is judicialized. Very conclusively, Senator Ted Cruz, a Trump ally and one of the nominees as a possible new magistrate, warned, distrusting even Judge Roberts, that “We cannot let Election Day come with a 4-4 Court.”

What you want to build is clear and with conclusive aspirations. Among the candidates, whose name will be known this Saturday, stood out for example Amy Barret, an ultra-Christian and anti-abortion magistrate. As a color detail, this lawyer belongs to a brotherhood “People of Praise”, a secret and ultra-conservative society, which defends male authority in the family and assigns to the main members of the group advisory functions, called “head” (head) for men and “servants” (handmaid) for women. According to an old article by The New York Times, members of that sect take a lifelong loyalty oath in defense of those medieval values.

Trump is betting that with this type of caress he will bring the evangelical vote closer. But the central point is that he is convinced that the elections will end in justice because the massiveness of the vote by mail will generate greater lapses for the count, which would enable your already announced fraud complaint. He assumes that with the new scenario in the Supreme he will have “An automatic majority” -It is worth the reference, not the only one in this scenario, with the experience of our country- to guarantee that the Court indicates it as the winner no matter what happens at the polls.

There are several antecedents that fly over this panorama. The most relevant is that of 20 years ago in the elections in Florida that George W. Bush and Al Gore virtually tied. In that narrowness, both obtained around 49% of the votes with a slight advantage for the Republican that later, by the count, was reduced to just 537 out of the six million voters in the state. The difference of less than 0.5% required by law to repeat the counts in certain counties. About 48 hours of automatic scrutiny left Bush in the lead, but the difference had fallen to 327 votes while the scandal grew and the denunciations of fraud multiplied by the errors of the voters when perforating the ballots. With such closeness between one and the other, already less than 0.25%, the law ordered a defaulting manual count. It was voted in November alreadyEven in December it was not clear who would go to the White House. The Republicans then unilaterally decided to proclaim Bush. Gore ordered his lawyers to demand the intervention of the Supreme Court. The Court took just one day to suspend the recounts, which left Bush ahead by that minimal, defining difference.

Trump looks in that mirror but you may get a distorted picture. History does not usually repeat itself in a linear fashion. The stages change. In addition, there is an unknown in this ambitious control architecture of the crown of the judicial system. The United States is not as precarious a country as the president supposes in the balance of powers game, a device that is hardly visible in other frontiers of institutional poverty such as in several Latin American countries. We Argentines understand well what it is about. In other words, Trump can elect a conservative court with the intention of turning it into a clerk’s office, but it is worth wondering to what extent that judicial vertex, even with the extreme characteristics that we have pointed out, will align itself under his command. We do not know. If so, it would be another significant example of the debacle of democracies that marks this time.

It is the same question that arises as to whether this America of today is permeable to a setback in issues such as abortion, homosexual marriage or immigration that flutters in court with those thoughts. That is, if it is that repressive and opaque cultural form that will seek to oppose the social protest that has grown in the country against racial discrimination, police abuse and, eminently, due to the economic crisis that displaces a great mass towards the abyss. of the middle and lower middle classes. Are the circumstances really given for these precariousness? Or will the context weigh much more than what is supposed in the Oval Room Cenacles?

A great power has multiple internal crises. The challenge is not to try to settle them with the weakening of the institutions and that of the totality of a system that Tocqueville already admired in 1831 in “La Democracia en América” ​​for the necessary brakes that he discovered in that nascent republic against the temptation to abuse in that the majority power could fall, “Just as tyrannical as a monarchical power”.

This strategy can work for Trump and get what he wants. But the next question for history would be where is the United States that has built this management. The american president has made a merit of his lack of leadership, not only with the pandemic at the domestic level, but with respect to the place that your country should occupy in the world.

It is interesting to note that in his recent speech at the 75th UN Assembly, deserted due to the circumstance but, this void, almost as a symbol of the crisis suffered by multilateralism, Trump introduced a paragraph that is supposed to be far from interests or the agenda for that appointment. He defended his karma from “America First” there holding that “I rejected the failed approaches of the past and put America first.” Even more important, he argued that all countries should do the same.

That ode to nationalism is seriously disruptive. How do you negotiate with a nation that anticipates that its interests come first? Even worse if at the same time it suggests that all other global players should raise the same shield. For those who want to look for it, there is the answer of the absence of coordination at the global level which should have been the central axis of geopolitics when the pandemic and its aggregate of economic destruction broke out. History exhibits multiple examples that prove that the realm of nationalism can at the same time be the realm of irresponsibility. This may be another chapter of that grave certainty.
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