What happens if Trump has to be reefed out of the White House?
A few short years ago it would have been hard to imagine a scenario where the President of the United States of America would refuse to check out of the big house once he’d lost the election. But here we are. While counting still continues in several states, election analysts called the election for Joe Biden on Saturday when the number of votes he’d received in Pennsylvania meant that it would be impossible for Donald Trump to catch him. Biden was also declared the winner in Nevada on Saturday, pushing him well clear of the 270 electoral votes he needed to take the presidency.
Donald Trump had long been signalling his bad intentions surrounding the election. He regularly dissed mail-in and absentee voting before voting began. Without any evidence, he suggested that there would be a problem with voter fraud. He insisted that if he lost, it would be because of cheating rather than because the other candidate got more votes. And so it was. In the midst of a pandemic that has already killed almost a quarter of a million Americans, sensible voters, voted early or mailed in their votes. In fact, most states have been operating a mail-in voting system very successfully for many years. The unfortunate thing for Trump was that all his rhetoric about the dodginess of mail-in voting meant that his supporters didn’t do mail-in voting. They went in person and on the day of the election to vote. This resulted in a massive mail-in and early voting pattern by Democrats. These votes were mostly counted after the on-the-day votes. This allowed Trump to make out that there was something nefarious going on when his early leads dwindled as soon as the mail-in and early votes started to be counted.
Trump said he wouldn’t leave the White House if he lost and he’s making good on that promise right now. It’s a tradition that once a winner is declared, the opponent concedes the election. It’s not law, it’s just custom. And good manners. Even the very fabulous but not noted for his humility, Kanye West had the good grace to concede the election several days ago.
It has been reported that Jared Kushner, other Trump family members and top aides have tried to talk to Donald Trump about conceding the election. Apparently, the orange one is not for budging. He is still claiming that he has won the election. His lawyer Rudy Giuliani has told reporters that the administraton is filing lawsuits in several states alleging voter fraud. The administration has yet to provide any evidence whatsover of any wrongdoing in relation to the election. Several of their lawsuits have already been dismissed by state courts.
On Twitter, although not as prolific as usual, Donald Trump has posted about ‘winning’ the election several times. Twitter has labelled has put warning labels on his tweets. Returning from yet another golf outing yesterday Mr Trump was asked by reporters about conceding the election. He said “Since does the Lamestream Media call who our next president will be? We all have learned a lot in the last two weeks!” Not good manners though, it seems.
What can be done about an incumbent who just won’t get out of the building though? Joe Biden has clearly stated that the authorities, with himself at the helm, will not hesitate to remove what he called “trespassers”. In fact, security at the White House, the job of the American Secret Service, can and will forcibly remove someone who shouldn’t be there. We can only hope that Trump digs his heels in and that a heap of big secret service men have to escort him from the premises. And that it’s all televised. It’s the Trump way!