There’s a scene in the 1983 classic comedy movie “Trading Places” where one of the story’s two main characters wakes up in his familiar and comfortable surroundings on Christmas
morning and declares to his butler standing by his bedside, “It was all a dream. I’ve had this terrible awful nightmare.”
Lewis Winthorpe III (played by a young and thin Dan Aykroyd) then elaborates on his epiphany. He thought he’d been dreaming as rotten thing after rotten thing happened in his life; he’d lost his job, his home and his fiancé, all as the result of a sinister $1 wager perpetrated between two arrogant and miserly partners of the financial management firm Lewis worked for. To make a long story short, Winthorpe then spots Billy Ray Valentine (played by a very young Eddie Murphy) who the evil duo placed into Lewis’s job and took over many of the other fine things in the pampered man’s life. As the film’s name would suggest, the two had actually “traded places.”
There’s a similar “end of awful dream” feeling that some Donald Trump supporters hope to experience in the near future. A survey came out last week that indicated nearly three in ten Republicans believe the former president might be reinstated this year. Is this were the case, many conservatives’ collective hallucinations would instantly evaporate -- just like Winthorpe’s -- only to find other problems at hand.
It should be noted that sixty-one percent of Trump’s backers said it was not very likely or not likely at all that their man would be headed back to the White House in 2021. Still, almost thirty-percent think it’s so? It would be like a dream, wouldn’t it? Or would it be more like a nightmare, considering everything that would fall to pieces if Trump “traded places” with Joe Biden now?
Some suppose we’re on the precipice of something monumental. Discussing the ongoing efforts to uncover the truth of what happened in Arizona, Georgia and other states last November, Roger L. Simon wrote at The Epoch Times:
“If you think things are bad at this moment in our history, if you think relations between the two halves of our country are strained now, just wait.
“We can only hope the situation will be resolved without escalating the violence we already see on a regular basis in places such as Portland, Seattle, and Minneapolis, not to mention on so many of our urban streets where gangs are shooting each other, accidentally murdering 3-year-olds in the process, and angry sociopaths take pokes at random pedestrians because of their skin color or political beliefs, sometimes proudly recording the event on video while paying no mind to the police who have virtually vanished anyway.
“How can an escalation of this already horrendous state of affairs be prevented? Who or what will be responsible for adjudicating what we may well have to deal with in our country so that some form of calm prevails and there is a resolution?”
All good questions. The entire idea of Trump being “reinstated” as president due to audits conducted in The Grand Canyon State or Peach State is far-fetched at best and legally impossible at worst, no matter how desirable it would appear to be to startle awake from our perpetual 2020 electoral nightmare. Needless to say, there is no constitutional guidance for such a massive “oops, we screwed up” switcheroo because the Founding Fathers, who wrote the Law that Governs Government, couldn’t envision something like this ever happening after a new president was inaugurated.
At the outset, let me say I would much prefer Donald Trump as president to Joe Biden. I was as heartbroken as the next conservative when the overnight results of vote tallies in those six outlier states (Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Arizona and Nevada) slowly slipped away from the incumbent, taking with them the Electoral Votes that would have guaranteed him a well-deserved second term.
But the old saying, “You can’t un-ring a bell” also applies here. Like it or not, the 2020 Election bell tolled long ago despite the dramatic efforts of many responsible and law-revering people to deaden or squelch the sound. It’s painful to recall now, but state court after state court and legislature after legislature declined to take up the issue, exempting themselves from the responsibility of verifying and counting their own state’s votes, probably in hopes that somebody, somewhere, would bite the proverbial bullet and do it for them.
Unfortunately, no one did. Trump complained loudly to anyone who would listen, but the powers-that-be simply turned away. Then, a few hundred overzealous yahoos went nuts on January 6 and made the legitimate cries of “foul!” moot -- at least for a period of time. For years, Democrats and Trump haters searched for the perfect means to silence the man, and they finally got one. No conservative I know ignores or pardons what happened that day. The “mostly peaceful” crowd was shown-up by the violent crazies (yet non-violent protesters are still being held in solitary confinement without even being charged). It looked like the streets of a blue city on the Capitol grounds that day -- but without the guns and looting.
At the time, I suspected the pandemonium was a false-flag operation carried out by Antifa goons in Trump garb. From the accounts I’ve seen, it appears I was wrong. The verifiably guilty must be punished -- and the nation should move on.
But to suddenly announce that the certified vote counts are invalid and declare Trump the winner and legitimate president months after the fact would tear the heart out of this country, a wound that would never heal. Americans who know history recall the first half of the nineteenth century when the northern states and southern states moved towards dissolution and ultimately, war. There is no tidy geographic dividing line these days, however.
You couldn’t even separate them by blue state versus red state. A shooting civil war would literally be brother against brother and friend against friend. There’d be nothing left to fight over after the conflict concluded. Anything that remained of a political meeting of the minds would dissolve. Would it really be worth it to win the 2020 election this way, even if it were determined there was gigantic fraud and malevolence?
If the results of the investigations and audits finds indisputable evidence that several states’ final totals were in error, the legitimacy of the Biden presidency would be yanked right out from under him and simultaneously supply the impetus to correct the voting situation before the next election. But nothing could be accomplished by deeming Trump the winner now and sending a fleet of moving vans to the White House gate seeking entrance to the property.
The wheels of government would stop. The bureaucracy in place would revolt. Would Biden Attorney General Merrick Garland agree to enforce the law as Trump demanded? Would Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg carry out the orders of the new Trump designee until the senate confirmed him or her? Would Kamala Harris extract herself from whatever she was doing -- not on the border! -- and work with Mike Pence on a hasty re-transition? Would Trump even want Pence back?
The thirty percent of people who think Trump should be reinstated must consider the bigger picture of what they’re advocating for. Who would supply the authority for the “trading places” exchange of presidents? The Supreme Court? If the black-robed Supremes wouldn’t take up the issue last fall, what makes you think they’d do it at present?
The military would be similarly stumped. A majority of the rank-and-file would back Trump because of his America First emphasis and patriotic orientation, but the liberal officer corps would never participate in an operation to displace Joe Biden. It would be pandemonium… and downright dangerous from a national security standpoint, too.
In saying (to close acquaintances) that he thinks he’ll be president again this year, Trump was probably attempting to drum up media coverage from leaks and cause hysteric denials from Democrats, liberals, #NeverTrumpers and every other Trump-hater on earth. And there are a lot of ‘em to choose from, including America’s enemies in Iran and China (among others) who figure bumbling Joe Biden is so incompetent and compromised that their leaders can do pretty much whatever they want without serious opposition from the Land of the Free.
Those who want Donald Trump to be president again must make it so according to the constitutional process outlined in the founding document itself. The political route is far from perfect, but it’s what we’ve got right now. There will be no “trading places” removal of Biden from office; and conservatives’ national nightmare will continue until we’re able to wake up and smell reality.
Trump president in 2021
2020 election recounts