How Much Destruction Is Trump Willing To Do If Biden Doesn't Give Him & His Family Blanket Pardons?

Floor Of Decency by Nancy Ohanian

The lawsuits are a joke-- and laughed out of one court after another. Yesterday a federal appeals court in Pennsylvania-- with 3 Republican judges (including one named by Trump)-- unanimously threw out Giuliani's latest unsubstantiated claims that voting in Philadelphia was rigged. "Calling an election unfair does not make it so. Charges require specific allegations and then proof. We have neither here," wrote Judge Stephanos Bibas, who was appointed to the court by Trump. (The other two judges were appointed by President George W. Bush.) While the president and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani have continued to make false and baseless claims that the election was rigged, the lawsuit itself did not make any allegations of fraud.

The recounts are even funnier. The latest was a recount demanded-- and paid for by the Trump campaign-- in Wisconsin's two biggest counties. Milwaukee County finished yesterday and the $3 million Trump spent brought Biden an extra 257 votes and Trump an extra 125 votes-- so a net increase for Biden of 132 votes. Muchas gracias, Señor Trumpanzee. The recount in Dane County will be finished tomorrow. In 2016 Hillary beat Trump in Dane County 217,697 (70.37%) to 71,275 (23.04%). As of today, the Dane County vote is 260,185 for Biden (75.5%) and 78,800 (22.9%) for Señor T. Meanwhile, right wing North Carolina venture capitalist Fred Eshelman, who has contributed millions of dollars to neo-fascist and GOP organizations and candidates, is suing the Trump campaign for $2.5 million he says was solicited under false pretenses. The false pretenses were that Trump had a legitimate case to make that the election was rigged against him.

Perhaps funniest of all is Trump's threat to enact a counter-inauguration at the same time of the real inauguration. Writing for the Daily Beast this morning, Asawin Suebsaeng reported that Trump has discussed announcing his 2024 candidacy during Biden's inauguration. The point is that in the twilight of his presidency, a deranged Trump is discussing different ways to disrupt the impending Biden administration, "chief among them by announcing another run against him. [Trumpanzee] has not just talked to close advisers and confidants about a potential 2024 run to reclaim the White House but about the specifics of a campaign launch. The conversations have explored, among other things, how Trump could best time his announcement so as to keep the Republican Party behind him for the next four years." First and foremost, of course-- I mean we are talking about the king of the grifters here-- Trump "and some of his closest associates have already started surveying prominent donors to get a sense of who would be with him, or perhaps against him, if he chose to run in the 2024 election."

More serious, though, are ways Trump is actually trying to undermine Biden by undermining America. This morning, Washington Post reporter Lisa Rein wrote that "The outgoing Trump administration is racing to enact the biggest change to the federal civil service in generations, reclassifying career employees at key agencies to strip their job protections and leave them open to being fired before Joe Biden takes office. The move to pull off an executive order the president issued less than two weeks before Election Day-- affecting tens of thousands of people in policy roles-- is accelerating at the agency closest to the White House, the Office of Management and Budget. The budget office sent a list this week of roles identified by its politically appointed leaders to the federal personnel agency for final sign-off. The list comprises 88 percent of its workforce-- 425 analysts and other experts who would shift into a new job classification called Schedule F. The employees would then be vulnerable to dismissal before Trump leaves office if they are considered poor performers or have resisted executing the president’s priorities, effectively turning them into political appointees that come and go with each administration.

By fast-tracking a process that gave agencies until Jan. 19 to identify affected jobs, the administration appears to be signaling its intent to leave as big an imprint as possible on a workforce it has long mistrusted. Democrats on Capitol Hill are trying to block the effort.
The White House budget office acts as the nerve center of the government, an elite career workforce that prepares and helps administer the annual spending plan and helps set fiscal and personnel policy for federal agencies. Its analysts are generally mission-driven, and they provide vast institutional memory and expertise for a president, regardless of party.

"Trump’s attack on the election, wrote Uri Friedman at The Atlantic, wasn’t and isn’t a sideshow. As far as American democracy is concerned, this is the main show. A democracy at grave risk one day cannot be pronounced healthy the next. The precedents Trump has set, the doubts he has sown, and the claims he has made will linger. Restoring faith in the democratic process will take time and effort-- and a favorable result is by no means guaranteed... The capacity of candidates to lose gracefully-- or, more specifically, to consent to the winning candidates’ right to govern, and to restrain themselves from stirring up grievances among their supporters-- is at the core of democracy... There are also clear signs that Trump’s message is resonating widely with his supporters. Republican trust in the electoral system has plummeted. (The president, in fact, has followed his announcement of the transition by tweeting about the high numbers of Trump voters who believe the election was stolen and who have lost confidence in the country’s democratic system, tending the doubts he has sown.)... The recent threats of violence against public officials underscore the danger."

Doesn't impact you? Maybe this doesn't either, but Trump's-- and the Republican Party's-- cavalier attitude towards the working class, could lead to 19 million more homeless Americans by Trump's last day in office-- not to mention another million Americans with COVID-19 and a death toll reaching beyond 350,000. This week, a report> from he National Low Income Housing Coalition and the University of Arizona estimates that 6.7 million households could be evicted in the coming months. "Millions of renter households could be at risk of eviction this winter due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic fallout. Without federal intervention, this flood of evictions will disrupt their lives and cause severe harm to their economic, social, mental, and physical well-being. These evictions will also trigger a wave of unsustainable downstream costs that will further strain the budgets of public health and social service systems... A significant share of evicted renters is likely to need services, including shelter and emergency medical care, that require extensive financial resources. And families who lose their homes are at higher risk of encountering the child welfare and juvenile delinquency systems, which also require significant resources. These costs are in addition to the well-documented personal costs of eviction on individuals and the costs to landlords of unpaid rent."

Trump and McConnell have made sure that there would be neither rental assistance nor the eviction protection American renters need. "The eviction moratorium in the federal CARES Act, which protected approximately one in four American renters, expired on July 25. In September, the Centers for Disease Control issued an eviction moratorium that applies to most renters financially burdened by COVID, but it is set to expire on December 31 and does not shield renters from the accumulation of back rent and late fees. Many state and local eviction moratoriums have expired or will soon. Meanwhile, approximately three in ten rental assistance programs created or expanded in response to COVID-19 have already closed. With COVID cases surpassing 11 million and rising, and winter approaching, more U.S. renters than ever are on the brink of eviction."