Saturday, December 12, 2020



Last days of Nero

Pardon me ... Trump's Dolchstosslegende ... Republicans' strong electoral showing down ballot ... Tejano vote ... Victory for Koch candidates ... Census case in Supreme Court ... The wreckage continues ... Oil leases in Alaska ... Last minute federal executions ... Roger Fitch, our man in Washington, reports 

"... in all of Anglo-American history, no monarch, royal governor, president, or other executive officer has tried to pardon himself ... the idea of a self-pardon is so antithetical to the constitutional structures of England and the United States ... that no one has ever had the effrontery to try it" - Just Security

"A self-pardon would be the ultimate act of constitutional onanism for a narcissistic President" - historian quoted in the New Yorker

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It was a near-run thing. The attempted coup failed, but democracy got a scare.

"Shameless" has lost all meaning under Donald Trump, but many were still shocked by the loser's clumsy efforts to corrupt Republicans among Michigan's official election canvassers (they ultimately confirmed Biden's win). Georgia's governor rebuffed a seditious request that he call a special legislative session to overturn the state's popular vote, and subversive appeals to Republican legislators in Pennsylvania also failed.

Even after the last two states whose votes Trump contested had approved electors supporting Biden, far-fetched lawsuits continued, but on December 9, the safe harbour deadline for submitting electors passed. A last-minute supreme court appeal failed, but disgraced Texas AG Ken Paxton filed an absurd "motion" invoking the court's original jurisdiction.

Paxton, who's awaiting trial for securities fraud, was joined on cue and at public expense by Republican AGs of 17 states, a sign of how desperate Republicans are to annul a fair but uncongenial election result. 

Within days, the supreme court summarily threw out the case. What did Texas AG Paxton hope to get out of it? Perhaps a pardon by Trump for possible federal crimes, but that won't help him with the state felony charges.

Trump's four-year demolition derby, his dismantling of America's political system, is ending - capped by an election more outrageous than the infamous 1876 presidential election (more here), and there was fraud: Donald Trump's.

Aside from possible pardons, what's left is a final money-raising hustle, a grift by the greedy president, fleecing his credulous followers on his way out.  

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