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Opinion: It's Donald Trump vs. democracy. Which side are you on?

November 19, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

John Avlon writes that the Trump campaign's strategy of trying to stop the certification of votes is evidence of a deeper rot -- the elevation of hyper-partisan self-interest over the national interest. The fact that it is being pursued -- however fruitlessly -- by members of a party who consider themselves super-patriots shows just how much that term has been perverted.

Amid the final flurry of conspiracy theories, which have translated into frivolous lawsuits and desperate political gambits, Trump campaign lawyer Jenna Ellis gave up the game when she cheered the brief but unprecedented partisan deadlock over certifying Wayne County's votes in the state of Michigan, where President-elect Joe Biden won by 148,000 votes.

Here's what that means: the Republican-controlled state legislature would try to overrule the popular vote and submit a separate set of Trump electors to select the next president in the electoral college.

In the case of Michigan, the state constitution makes it clear that "all 16 Michigan electoral votes automatically go to the presidential candidate winning the popular vote" -- which was Biden -- and GOP legislative leaders have pledged not to change the law in an attempt to put Trump in power, despite pressure from the president's allies.

More baseless claims about mass voter fraud were thrown out of a Michigan court last week, when a judge blocked Trump's attempt to stop certification of Biden's win by declaring accusations of widespread election fraud "incorrect and not credible. " Not deterred by legal reasoning, facts or judicial decisions, Trump simply blurted out fantasies of a Michigan victory, declaring on Wednesday: "The Great State of Michigan, with votes being far greater than the number of people who voted, cannot certify the election.

While Wayne County's canvassers reversed themselves in the face of massive "feedback" from voters, President Trump highlighted his autocratic impulses by firing his director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, Chris Krebs, for the sin of doing his job and telling the truth, when he said "there is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised. " Trump's baseless and failed legal claims of mass voter fraud depend on denying that reality.

Republicans who naively believed that Trump would be chastened by his impeachment and that voters would be able to cast the final vote on his fitness for office (as South Dakota Senator John Thune argued, "the American people -- not Washington politicians -- should choose whether the president remains in office") must now confront the fact that Trump and his team, through Washington politicians and a contested electoral college decision, want to bypass the American people on the path to reelection.

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