Democracy in Survival Mode

by Andrew Lidden Pate, Jr.

It is a question of "precisely when?" not of "whether?" The ousting of Donald Trump and the restoration of our American Democracy is happening as we live and breathe— at times it is occurring in an explosive manner, but mostly in a plodding, methodical way, to the disgust of the millions of us who want it now.

Consider the latest rebuke of the President: The defense of the judiciary by Chief Justice John Roberts in response to Trump’s having railed against an immigration decision in the Ninth Circuit telling Trump he could not “impose a condition that Congress had expressly forbidden,” in the words of U.S. District Court Judge Jon Tigar.

The rebuke of a president by a Chief Justice is unprecedented, and is a telling signal that the adults in our judicial system have decided no longer to tolerate Trump’s childish harangues. They are taking charge.

We are headed for a showdown no doubt, which will possibly take place when the report of the Muellar investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 elections is issued or, if not then, with the presidential election of 2020.

The Mid-Term elections of 2018 ought to have shown everyone with their eyes open that a majority of Americans think Trump unfit for the presidency. If, however,  he survives the next 23 months, the will of the people will be delayed, unless, of course, the president either makes an about face or the Democrats nominate someone the voters  consider yet more dangerous to the nation, a highly unlikely turn  of events.

Trump’s election in 2016 caught most Americans by surprise. Few thought it possible. But even during the campaign, there was intense anti-Trumpism among the Republican and the Democratic leadership, which, despite the embarrassing waffling of Republican senators (save the late John McCain), has only intensified since and been magnified by an even more intensive and extensive opposition to the President in the mainstream media, excepting Fox News of course and conservative talk show hosts Rush Limbaugh and Sean Haggerty, also of Fox News.

In September of 2018 two publications  highlighted the strength of the anti-Trump movement. One was the publication of a book by Pulitzer Prize winning Robert Woodward of Watergate renown,  Fear: Trump in the White House. Simultaneously almost, was the publication of an anonymous letter in the NY Times, written by a person inside the presidents’ inner circle with the astonishing title of “I am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration."

Although in the following month, the President was able to get his man Judge Brett Kavanaugh confirmed to the Supreme Court, the bitter controversy surrounding the confirmation process enabled women and others to make their Trump-opposition visible and known, and their clear message was:  We will not to be silenced.

And so it is, November 3, 2020 in sight.  What a day of rejoicing that will be!

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