Random Ruminations on 2024

My high school and college classmate Joe Zinman is no longer with us. I miss him. We talked quite a bit during his last few months. He was always so optimistic about our political situation, which gave me pause now and then. Now, I need someone else to bring me to heel when I go off the deep end. Any volunteers?

In his absence, rather than talking about my health (which sucks) or my retirement (which also sucks), I thought I would inflict some political gabble upon you, just to prove that I haven’t gone around the bend yet, despite rumors to the contrary. (This was also designed to keep us communicating with each other at least once in a blue moon, even if it is only to tell me to shut the fuck up.)

We’re into what is going to be a terrible election year. I expect Ron DeSantis to be Trump’s running mate. The good news about that is that Florida would have voted for Trump whether or not DeSantis is on the ticket. The bad news is that this makes DeSantis the titular frontrunner in 2028, assuming that there is an election in 2028. (Since my chances of being here for that election are less than 50/50, I really don’t know why I give a shit, but I do.)

It’s going to be a terrible election year because there is going to be violence at the poll and, regardless of who wins, there will be challenges after the fact. If Biden wins, there will be claims of election fraud but….this time…if Trump wins, there will still be claims of election fraud. 

(Since Trump voted in Florida in 2020 but was not a legal resident of Florida at the time, that’s prima fascia evidence of voter fraud right there. If he continues to list Mar A Lago as his home, the fraud continues. There is a legal agreement in place between the City of Palm Beach and Donald Trump that there would be no permanent residences at Mar A Lago. You cannot use a temporary residence as a legal voting address.)

My calculations suggest that Trump will lose the popular vote by an even bigger margin this time around – that’s a foregone conclusion, with women turning out in droves to vote against him. I still think that Biden will win the electoral vote, but he has been weakened by the situation in Israel, which has split the Democratic party into two factions. 

Third-party candidacies also threaten Biden’s chances. Third parties are dangerous in the American political system. Ralph Nader pulled enough votes from Al Gore in Florida to give the win to W.  and Jill Stein pulled enough votes in several states to tip the balance in Trump’s favor in the electoral college. 

In the event that no one wins 270 EC votes, the election goes to the Houe. We all know that. Republicans control the votes in the House because each state gets only one vote and, in the current Congress, Republicans control 26 of the 50 state delegations. This means that, if Biden (or whomever) doesn’t pick up 270 Electoral College votes, Trump will be elected in the House of Representatives. 

It is obvious that we need to eliminate the Electoral College….but it is equally obvious that isn’t possible since it would require a constitutional amendment to do that….and neither party has the ability to pull that off now nor does that seem feasible for the foreseeable future. 

The other glaring mistake that the Democrats inflicted upon themselves was the Presidential Succession Act of 1947, which restored the Speaker of the House and the President Pro Tem of the Senate to the presidential line of succession, before the cabinet members. (At the time, of course, both of those positions were held by Democrats.)  

In retrospect, it is obvious that the line of succession should run through the party that was elected to the presidency, which would put the Secretary of State third in line after the Vice President, followed by the other secretaries in the order in which their departments were created. This would force presidents to be much more careful about their cabinet selections. (The Federalists, who were then in control of Congress at the time, passed the Succession Act of 1792 that put the President Pro Tem and the Speaker of the House third and fourth in the line of succession specifically because the Federalists did not want Thomas Jefferson, who was then Secretary of State, as third in line after an aging president and a vice president whose health was always questionable.)

At present, the Democrats have no shot at getting such a bill through Congress, which means that a Republican Speaker of the House would  – in the event that both the president and the vice president should die in office – automatically become president….and if that speaker were Donald Trump, I wouldn’t give a plugged nickel for the chances of a Democrat serving out the next term of office as either president or vice president. 

This is why it is of overwhelming importance that the Democrats take control of the House back in 2024, not because I am a Democrat (I was but I have grown to hate the party for its arrogant stupidities) but because I don’t want to see a fascist elected president. 

I hope you all had a great year, and I hope we all make it through the next year, just to see what’s going to happen. I would be so pissed if I were to die before January 20, 2025. Wouldn’t you?