With poll numbers staying put and the odds of a Joe Biden win in Tuesday's election looking good — possibly by a decisive margin — there's mounting dread about how Donald Trump will behave after a defeat. After all, Trump is a sociopathic narcissist with the emotional control of a — well, I won't insult toddlers with the comparison — and he lives in mortal terror of being viewed as a loser. He's already made clear that he will refuses to concede, no matter what, and he's grasping desperately for any way to get legal ballots thrown out so he can steal the election.
No wonder people are afraid Trump will go completely apes**t if his efforts to steal this fail and he actually loses. As Salon's Matthew Rozsa recently explained in a popular piece, psychologists worry that the narcissistic injury to Trump will result in him lashing out "in his vindictive rage to punish an America which he may believe has consigned him to 'loser' status."
On Friday, Ron Suskind of the New York Times published an article based on interviews with "some two dozen officials and aides, several of whom are still serving in the Trump administration," who worried that "the president could use the power of the government" to lash out at enemies, try to steal the election or otherwise wreak havoc on the nation.
"Trump could do real damage to the country, his successor or presidential traditions," Garrett Graff wrote Wednesday at Politico, adding that "there's reason to wonder if a Trump transition might actually be the start of the wildest chapter of an already controversial presidency."
"We May Need the Twenty-Fifth Amendment if Trump Loses," blares a headline at the New Yorker.
Of course we should be worried that Trump, a vindictive man whose only true pleasures come from sadism, will abuse his power to punish Americans if he loses.
But let's be honest: He's also going to do that if he wins.