A pair of legal experts mapped out a terrifying scenario where Republican-led state legislatures could split the nation into warring factions to force Donald Trump back into the White House.
Law professors Bruce Ackerman, of Yale University, and Gerard Magliocca, of Indiana University, called for congressional action to determine whether Donald Trump broke his official oath and was thereby constitutionally barred from running for president again, and they described in a new Politico column how a failure to act would almost certainly lead to chaos and violence.
"Once Trump announces his candidacy, his lawyers will be confronting multiple challenges to his qualifications on a nationwide basis," Ackerman and Magliocca wrote.
"One thing is clear. It is virtually impossible that all 50 states will come to the same decision," they added. "Instead, some election authorities will disqualify him while others will conclude that the facts are insufficiently compelling to justify his exclusion under the 14th Amendment."
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That would effectively split the nation into a “constitutionalist” region, where Trump will be disqualified, and insurrectionist” region, where Trump would organize rallies and his opponents would organize counter-demonstrations -- reinforcing political polarization, sparking violent confrontations and setting up a tense and chaotic Election Day.
"Trump supporters in constitutionalist states won’t see his name on their ballots," the law professors wrote. "Instead, they will likely see the name of a proxy candidate whom Trump has designated as his stand-in to deprive Biden of his electoral college majority. The stand-in’s name will be proof to Republicans that the vote count has been rigged against Trump from the start. In contrast, Biden’s supporters in insurrectionist states will be outraged by Trump’s defiance of the 14th Amendment."
The chaos would worsen after polls close, and vice president Kamala Harris would be placed under intense pressure Jan. 6, 2025 and the Constitution would be tested to its limits and beyond as various electoral scenarios play out and go through barely imaginable legal challenges -- unless Congress acts immediately.
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"In an ideal world, Congress would enact federal legislation to create a special judicial panel to determine, after a full and fair hearing, whether Trump led an 'insurrection' in 2021," the professors argue. "Rather than waiting for him to declare his candidacy, the tribunal should be convened immediately and make its decision expeditiously — so that it could be reviewed by the Supreme Court by the end of this year."
"Even if the panel or the court decided in favor of Trump," they added, " this would be far better than to split America in two.
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