Before he shot himself in 2005 after decades of cocaine & booze self abuse, HST produced some of the most remarkable commentary on the modern US political process. With insider access to the players involved, he ruthlessly reported their foibles, plots, & schemes, the standout report being, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72. A forceful work of truths, fiction, lies, rumours and black and white illustrations by Ralph Steadman, it became an enduring testimony of what it’s like to really follow the roller coaster of a US presidential campaign.
One wonders what he’d make of 2020.
Now we’re entering the home stretch & like the proverbial magician’s hat, out pops the Trump campaign’s October surprise – allegations that presidential candidate Joseph Biden has been a beneficiary of an international influence-peddling scheme with his son, Hunter, as the point man. This has dramatically, for the moment, turned the tables. The pre-election day move is an obvious, carefully planned Trump campaign hit job, but most respected pundits (CNN, I’m not looking at you) predict these allegations have come too late to sway the outcome of election day.
Howevah, their view misses what could indeed be a three-move check-mate against Joe Biden, which comes to pass……after the votes are counted……
Nov 3, the race for POTUS will be far from over, & Trump’s handlers seem to know this.
The follow-up will be an unprecedented public spectacle that will likely very much include the Electoral College. Further, this possible coup will have sixty-four very valuable extra days, a Judiciary Committee, an Attorney General, a Senate and developing media attention, all remaining and at the disposal of the RNC. The Trump campaign knows this and appears to be playing the long game. Whatever their personal baggage (& there’s plenty of it) Rudy Giuliani and Steve Bannon are not political mugs. If the current allegations prove worthy of investigation at the Congressional level it is very doubtful that everything would be risked on only influencing the popular vote count. A veritable treasure chest of allegations has been handed over to Trump’s people on four separate occasions thus far. If these revelations prove true, and should Trump lose, this will also provide his campaign no less than two more chances to bring Biden down.
The timing of the weeks bombshells – alleging a Biden family pay-to-play scheme – mimic the effects of the July 22nd and November 6th, 2016 Wikileaks pre-election revelations. Here, in context, it should be remembered that this massive leak of emails de-railed the campaign of the (then) DNC frontrunner, Hillary Rodham Clinton. It also exposed the utter anti-democratic corruption and coup that was the 2016 DNC presidential election committee. The Biden pay-to-play allegations also mimic those made against Hillary Clinton US Secretary of State and the trove of evidence strongly indicating her own scheme in which her business partner, former president Bill Clinton, whored himself for international speeches…and access to Hillary’s State Department.
The Puffinati will be familiar with what has emerged so far in October 2020, but there’s no harm in a quick summary of the main points :
Boom. The initial salvo released the news of Hunter Bidens’ laptop and an alleged FBI cover-up of its illicit contents. In brief, Hunter had left it uncollected for months at a computer repair shop, and after seeing the laptop’s contents, the shop owner first turned it over to the FBI which did nothing with it. But a copy of the hard drive had been kept by the shop owner, who passed it to Trump’s top henchman, Rudy Giuliani, who very carefully tossed this bone to the New York Post, who in turn blew the whistle to the public. The laptop’s contents and emails made headlines… except in virtually the entirety of DNC aligned mainstream and social media. That’s most of it. This began Trump’s efforts to substantiate that Ol’ Sleepy Joe was willing to sell influence in the VP’s office while he was in that office. Worse, the Father & Son Biden Combo may have been working in concert with America’s newest enemy number one: Chyyyyyna.
Boom. Two days later, a former close business associate of Hunter Biden, Bevan Cooney, (currently serving a prison sentence for fraud), gave up his own laptop which contained over 26,000 emails making it explicit (according to Breitbart) that Hunter Biden was trading off the Biden name, connections & access.
Boom. A day late again, Tony Bobulinski stepped forward with his digital paper trail of alleged Biden family conspiracy. Bobulinski has offered himself up as the total insider with the needed direct link(s) to the former VP and China. As of Tuesday night, Oct 27th, when appearing on Fox News with Tucker Carlson, he became the personalised face representing all these three sets of revelations. In reviewing the interview, despite his constant reminders of his being a democrat, his military record and his outrage on behalf of the American people, Bobulinski came over as a stand out well-rehearsed hitman – a reverse Ollie North, if you will – but his clownish schtick does not mean his purported evidence can be discounted.
Already these allegations have provided much further de-legitimacy of the Biden campaign beyond the candidate himself. The virtual black-out of all the stories and the excuses offered by the news directors of many censors have not blinded the public. Instead, this obvious censorship has rocketed this developing story to a massive new viewership. Questions about the related FBI cover-up in burying the laptop allegations have further increased calls for an investigation. The outrage of America’s awakening public is rising daily, with at least sixty-four plus days to go. Post-election day, should these allegations bear scrutiny, there are three possible investigative bodies available to Trump. Further, the Electoral College has two more required steps to complete as well. This gives Trump, should he lose, multiple new chances to legally overthrow Biden.
Behind the scenes, as the process of the Electoral College begins before it convenes for the last time on Jan 6, 2021, the Judiciary Committee, the Senate and the Attorney General will remain republican. Assuming AG Bill Barr is willing to do his job, history may be made post-election and, if so, placing one’s hand upon the bible may not this time be the privilege of the president-elect, but that of an indicted co-defendant in court.
The first step of the Electoral College does not take place until Monday, Dec 14th. In the meantime, although covering-up for Biden as the DNC media may attempt, the Republican-controlled Judiciary Committee has convened (Oct 28th) public hearings regarding the censorship by Twitter, Google, and Facebook of the Biden accusations. These hearings, although in the guise of examining social media censorship, are an initial public display by the RNC of many of the allegations against Biden. They will surely become must-see TV for the tens of millions of locked-down, unemployed, and pissed off American’s who were already holding their noses about this election’s bi-partisan stench. Two of the three constitutionally available methods of investigation are tactically available to the RNC: A Senate Commission; or the Appointment of a Special Counsel, at the request of the Judiciary Committee, by the Dept. of Justice.
A Senate investigation would have the benefit of TV coverage, as was the case with the Watergate and 9/11 investigations. It may be included in a duet of investigations. With the Judiciary Committee already on the attack, it will almost certainly reconvene again with Biden as the target. Able to function quickly as a quasi- grand jury, upon the Judiciary Committee’s initial examination the JC will likely call for the appointment of a Special Counsel. The Attorney General, William Barr, must then immediately appoint a Special Counsel of his choosing. Billy Barr has of late not been loyal to Trump, nor with his investigations into DNC criminal interference and collusion against a sitting president. But, if Barr fails to appoint a Special Counsel he must, by law, inform the Judiciary Committee of his exact reasons. So, if Barr doesn’t do his job as demanded by the JC, he too will join Dorsey and Zuckerberg as co-conspirators, at least in the widening minds of the public now watching closely.
Regarding the AG’s support of a Special Counsel, the regulations set forth (28 C.F.R. 600.1) require a three-part analysis: One, that “criminal investigation of a person or matter is warranted.” Two, that prosecution of the “person or matter” would present “a conflict of interest for the Department [DoJ]”, and, three, whether “it would be in the public interest to appoint an outside Special Counsel to assume responsibility for the matter.”
Certainly, the days before the election are not sufficient to see any result of an investigation and Trump just might win. Or, lose. Trump’s campaign loyalists knew this beforehand, particularly the suddenly released from the woodshed, all dried out, Steve Bannon. He and Giuliani have likely had all this info for many weeks in waiting. If legitimate, to waste political treasure of this magnitude too early in a single pre-election attack would be unlikely. Since a Trump loss is still the predicted outcome, both are more likely preparing to play the long game of the post-election day Electoral College. Presumably, both are aware of its step-by-step chronology. Almost all of American voters are not. Yet. However fraudulent this election may be on many other state line battle fronts, the two upcoming Electoral College votes (actually fifty-one votes in total), both a month apart, are required of the EC to certify the presidential winner. With the scripted investigations thus already nicely raging in the minds of the Electoral College, and the court of public opinion, the EC has the ability to be Trump’s ace in the hole.
As background, the Electoral College is not an institution but, more accurately, the process of certifying the final results of a presidential election after Election Day and before the inauguration of Jan 20, 2021. Previous to the 2016 election, Electors of each state – Republican or Democrat- only “promised” that they would vote for the candidate who did prevail in their state. Few states had a legal requirement nor penalty for an Elector not doing so. Up until that election, only a total of eight Elector’s had ever in US history bucked party lines. In July 2020, the US Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, certified a state’s ability to mandate that any elector not deviate and that any who would can be sanctioned. At this time, still many states have not mandated a penalty, and of those that do, none is punitive enough to prevent an Elector following his conscience and allegiance to country.
As the Electoral College begins, and voter tabulation finally comes in sometime beyond Nov 3, the governor of each state must first prepare a “Certificate of Ascertainment” listing all of the candidates who ran for President along with the names of each of the respective Electors of the state’s party choice of president. Each state sends its Certificate of Ascertainment to the National Archives, but the C.A. of each state is also readied for a required upcoming public meeting of Electors at each of the fifty state capitols.
The public meeting of the electors must take place on the first Monday after the second Wednesday in December, which will be December 14, 2020.The electors meet in their respective states, where they cast their votes for President and Vice President on separate personal ballots. After the vote, usually a formality seldom attended by members of the public, each state’s elector’s votes are next recorded on that state’s “Certificate of Vote,” which, now finalised, is also sent to the Congress and the National Archives as part of the official records of the presidential election.
But, on Dec 14 – just forty-one days in– each state’s EC must vote in public. What will be the mood of these Electors six weeks, and possibly two ongoing investigations, after election day? Regardless, each state will next have three more weeks to re-consider their Dec 14 vote, the mounting evidence… and their conscience. Any individual protest by an elector will be merely grandstanding. However, by law, any state body of Electors might instead be influenced to collectively, “object.” This collective state protest of objection to a president-elect can be rendered at the State House on Dec 14, but also at any time before the reading of that state’s name from the floor of the US House of Representatives. That will be on Wed Jan 6, 2021.
This meeting is also, by law, public. Yes, instead of individually influencing Electors to change their minds on individual votes at the State House, an entire state might ultimately- after days of watching the results of Biden’s true character surface daily – exert its 10th Amendment rights and chose to object to Biden’s certification. When the elector’s votes are read one-by-one by one, in alphabetical order by one of the four designated congressional “Tellers”, any state at that moment may interrupt the proceedings at the calling of its name and object. The objection must be on constitutional grounds. Such as secretly dealing with a foreign power for profit. Just as importantly, if any state does object, the vote tally immediately stops and a separate joint session of Congress must then be held to investigate and debate the merits of that state’s objection. Should there be a subsequent objection, yet another session must be held, but it is unclear if multiple issues and state’s objections could be combined.
Although a president-elect with a criminal conviction can indeed still be elected president, any state can at least temporarily stop the proceeding for an examination of new charges by the full House. For examples of this possibility, Texas, in its state’s constitution, provides that disqualification for elected office can be for “anyone that has a conviction for bribery, forgery, perjury, and other high crimes.” Texas is a Trump state and is a strategic possibility to object on behalf of Trump once Trump makes the call to party loyalist, Gov. Greg Abbott. Over in Georgia, in recent years a Democrat stronghold, their bar is lower, disqualifying anyone who has been convicted of a crime “about moral turpitude.”
What is important to note is that if Biden crosses the bar in any state, it would thus be statutorily illegal for that state to allow its electors to certify its State’s result on Jan 6. Therefore, that state must object. Having Georgia similarly object on Jan 6 is not beyond possibility if the allegations are by then substantially proven.
As for the voter, this is certainly not a far-fetched possibility. On, Oct 26, the internet search engines for “can I change my vote” was reportedly surging nationally. And, by Jan 6 2021…?
Lets be objective here. An objection by a state has nevah habbened. This eventuality though, particularly if other states followed suit, would be far different from Biden dropping dead or impeached by his own party under the 25th Amendment due to his declining mental condition. The objection(s) would also have the potential to remove enough Elector’s votes from the Biden’s grand total to swing that remaining total in Trump’s favour. These objections would not provide the DNC with their desired result of a Kamala Harris presidency. Nor would the Speaker of the House take over as interim president. This would be a unique electoral problem, one probably headed to Supreme Court for resolution.
Come Dec 14, and then on Jan 6, on either day where will the unemployed, pitchfork carrying, depressed, angry, hungry, and disenfranchised voters be, physically and mentally. The answer on both days could be: shoulder to shoulder packing each and every State House rotunda. Rightfully, the voters, after decades of congressional, presidential and political party corruption are quite anxious and willing to finally lynch at least one of these bastards.
And Joe Biden may be the one to swing.
Will Biden fight? It’s doubtful, since he has trouble speaking, much less weathering a prosecutor’s attack.
Will Kamala Harris take his place?
Not a chance. No outraged voter or elector after,having taken Biden’s skin,will ever allow a black Hillary Clinton in the White House, particularly one just as corrupt as Biden.
Nancy Pelosi ?……….. Sorry, just couldn’t resist that…….
While it is easy to detest the presidential offerings of at least the past five elections, any political junkie should put aside a partisan view-point to appreciate this possible brilliant strategic checkmate put together by Giuliani and Bannon. If the allegations against Joe Biden and family begin to gel into hard proof, the aftermath of the worst presidential election in US history will only increase in turmoil. With the other ongoing election chaos, thus combined with the Electoral College, the flames already on American streets will become a firestorm that has the real possibility of destroying the nation. The American voter, will in less than 3 days, and sixty-four days after that, have to watch, wait, and see.
As HST might have said (*)
“How many more of these stinking, double-downer sideshows will we have to go through before we can get ourselves straight enough to put together some kind of national election that will give me and the at least 20 million people I tend to agree with a chance to vote FOR something, instead of always being faced with that old familiar choice between the lesser of two evils?”
(*) He did. Quote from Fear & Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72
Featured image: “Hunter S. Thompson, painted portrait _DDC3948” by Abode of Chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0
© DJM 2020
The Goodnight Vienna Audio file