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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 6/16/22

Trump's Secret Plan Was No Secret

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When Trump ordered Pence to overturn the 2020 election, he was trying to repeat what Republicans did in 1876. There are things we can do to prevent a third attempt in 2024 and we need to do them now.

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Today's January 6th Committee's hearings are about the pressure campaign on Mike Pence to hand the election of 2020 to Trump. Official Washington and the media are shocked "- "Shocked, I tell you!" "- that John Eastman, Rudy Giuliani, and Donald Trump had come up with the "bizarre" idea that Vice President Pence could toss the election to the House, thus keeping Trump in office.

They're amazed when they reference five states having submitted two slates of electors each, the "real" Biden ones and the "phony" Trump ones that Giuliani and Eastman conspired with Republicans to create.

But this was neither bizarre nor new.

I was hearing rumblings about this in the spring of 2020 "- a full eight months before the election that Trump lost "- and wrote an article for on March 13, 2020 laying out Trump's coming strategy.

It turns out that Trump was merely planning a repeat of something Republicans had already done "- when the Vice President overturned the election of 1876 that Democrat Sam Tilden had won "- and gave the White House to the loser, Republican Rutherford B. Hayes. My article even pointed out how rightwingers on the Supreme Court had prepared the ground for this strategy (think Clarence and Ginny Thomas).

I think you'll find it fascinating, and it will help you understand both what Eastman/Trump/Giuliani were thinking (and why) as well as why and how so many other Republicans (who have not yet been outed, but hopefully will be) thought it could work. Here's that article in full:

We need to plan now in case Trump loses in November "- but refuses to leave the White House

The Constitution provides a couple of mechanisms for Trump to lose the 2020 election"-both the popular vote and the Electoral College"-and still hold the office of president for a second term.

It's keeping historians and constitutional scholars up at night and, based on offline conversations I've had with D.C. conservatives I know, is something the GOP and partisans within the Trump administration are already discussing.

Bill Maher and I have been repeatedly asking a question on the air that the rest of America's media seemingly thinks is too far out to even consider: What if Trump's lawyer Michael Cohen is right, and after losing the 2020 election Trump refuses to leave office?

On its surface, the question seems silly"-nobody who has lost both the popular vote and an uncontested Electoral College vote has ever gone on to become president, right?

Unfortunately, it's wrong. The GOP has done this before, an action that included multiple threats of violence and bloodshed on the floor of Congress, leading Democrats to cave in even though their candidate won the popular vote and had 22 more electoral votes than the Republican (who became president).

Additionally, the Constitution says that if a presidential election really turns into a mess with multiple claims of fraud or some other crisis, the president is selected by the U.S. House of Representatives.

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Thom Hartmann is a Project Censored Award-winning New York Times best-selling author, and host of a nationally syndicated daily progressive talk program on the Air America Radio Network, live noon-3 PM ET. His most recent books are "The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight," "Unequal Protection: The Rise of Corporate Dominance and the Theft of Human Rights," "We The People," "What Would Jefferson Do?," "Screwed: The Undeclared War Against the Middle (more...)

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