To the editor:
Unless I’ve miscounted, the recent 2020 presidential election is number 59 in a series dating back to the late 1700s. There have been claims of fraud in the past presidential elections, but this election marks the first and only time the losing candidate, the U.S. president for the previous term, has for over two months made loud and repeated claims the election was stolen from him as a result of large-scale fraud. It also marks the first time a violent mob of some of the loser’s supporters forced their way into the Capitol building and disrupted the business of Congress. Coincidence? I think not.
It’s safe to say that had Trump not claimed he lost the election due to cheating and had instead graciously conceded as have so many other previous losing candidates, or if he had at least stopped his claims and calmed his followers after 50+ judicial rulings in various courts ruled his complaints as being unfounded, there might have been some protests but there would not have been assault on Congress. My evidence for making this claim? The other 58 presidential elections.
Is Trump directly culpable for the resulting mob rushing the Capitol? He did, after all, use the word “peacefully” in his address to his supporters earlier in the day, albeit once at the very beginning. I count the use of “fight” 20 times in that same speech, a word that can be interpreted at least two ways. A jury trial regarding this could likely go either way depending on the arguments put forth by the opposing attorneys.
Is Trump indirectly culpable for the resulting mob rushing the Capitol? I consider myself to be in the political middle, neither a Democrat or a Republican. I’m a registered Independent, likely considered by some in Texas and Oklahoma as a leftist environmental tree-hugger, and by others in California or New York as a right-wing gun toting law-and-order fanatic. My answer to this last question, noting that 58 of 59 elections with losers other than Trump did not result in mob action (though one did result in a Civil War), is “Hell yes!”. Considering that far and away the most likely cause for Biden’s election win is that he actually won fair and square and not that widespread fraud caused Trump’s loss, the President’s behavior these past few months does not “preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of the United States” as per his oath sworn before God. Instead his behavior tends to rip this country apart. This middle-of-the-road independent voter’s conclusion? Impeach Trump again. The man has earned it.