In yet another example of the lengths he is willing to go to quench his egomaniacal thirst for power, Donald Trump on Saturday openly demanded the “termination” of the United States Constitution so that he could be returned to power.
In reaction to recent news about how Twitter may have been involved in a coverup of the Hunter Biden scandal, Trump posted a rant on Truth Social repeating his claim that the 2020 election was stolen from him, and he demanded that he be returned to power, even if the termination of the Constitution were required to do so (via National Review):
“So, with the revelation of MASSIVE & WIDESPREAD FRAUD & DECEPTION in working closely with Big Tech Companies, the DNC, & the Democrat Party, do you throw the Presidential Election Results of 2020 OUT and declare the RIGHTFUL WINNER, or do you have a NEW ELECTION?
“A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution. Our great ‘Founders’ did not want, and would not condone, False & Fraudulent Elections!” (Emphasis mine)
It would be nice to dismiss Trump’s call for the termination of the Constitution as just another harmless rant taken out of context — as the cult will ultimately do — but Trump’s track record along with the actions taken by his inner circle following the 2020 election makes his intentions perfectly clear.
When Trump’s reelection chances started looking bad in the summer of 2020, he openly entertained suspending the Constitution and cancelling the election; an idea supported by a majority of Republicans in the summer of 2017.
With Universal Mail-In Voting (not Absentee Voting, which is good), 2020 will be the most INACCURATE & FRAUDULENT Election in history. It will be a great embarrassment to the USA. Delay the Election until people can properly, securely and safely vote???
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 30, 2020
A few days following the 2020 election, Michael Flynn participated in the “We the People Convention” where he called on Trump to implement martial law and conduct a new election. At about the same time, fellow QAnon nut-job Sidney “Release the Kraken” Powell called on Trump to invoke the Insurrection Act (a law that gives the president authority to deploy active-duty military to maintain or restore peace in times of crisis), suspend the Electoral College vote, and set up military tribunals to launch an investigation into the election.
Trump gave Flynn’s and Powell’s recommendations serious consideration. Earlier this year, we learned that among records Donald Trump’s lawyers attempted to withhold from Jan. 6 investigators was a draft of an executive order to stage a military coup that would allow him to remain in power. Under the order, the military would be under orders to immediately “seize, collect, retain and analyze” all voting machines, equipment, computers, records, etc.
There have been a few Republicans willing to criticize Trump’s demand to terminate the Constitution, but according to one Republican, destroying the Constitution is secondary to the interests of the Party (via ABC’s This Week):
Republican Ohio Rep. Dave Joyce said Sunday that he didn’t want to be drawn into commenting on Donald Trump’s recent call to suspend the Constitution over baseless claims of 2020 election fraud.
Joyce initially declined to respond, saying he didn’t know what Trump said on social media and that the public wasn’t “interested in looking backwards.” But Stephanopoulos pressed further, and Joyce ultimately said that Trump’s comment should be taken “in context” but that it wouldn’t prevent him from supporting Trump if he ends up winning the nomination.
“It’s early. I think there’s going to be a lot of people in the primary … [but] I will support whoever the Republican nominee is,” Joyce said while noting he didn’t think Trump would manage to win the 2024 Republican presidential nomination because there are “a lot of other good quality candidates out there.”
“That’s a remarkable statement,” Stephanopoulos said. “You just said you’d support a candidate who’s come out for suspending the Constitution.”
“Well, you know, he says a lot of things,” Joyce said, adding, “I can’t be really chasing every one of these crazy statements that come from any of these candidates.”
Throughout his presidency, Donald Trump proved to be a serious threat to the Constitution.
Trump’s disdain for freedom of the press first reared its orange-colored head in February 2016 at a campaign rally when he promised to open up libel laws, saying that when the media “writes purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money.”
In January 2018, Trump renewed his commitment to destroy the First Amendment when he announced in a staff meeting that he would pursue ways to expand libel laws to silence media outlets that publish unfavorable news about him and his policies.
In October 2019, lawyers for Trump and his campaign (Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.) sent a letter to CNN announcing their plan to sue the network for “a substantial payment of damages” due to the network’s so-called anti-Trump bias.
Since 2016, the free press has only been one of Trump’s many attacks on the Constitution.
- Trump targeted freedom of speech in October 2018 when he sought new regulations to ban demonstrations and protests in Washington.
- Trump targeted the Second Amendment when he embraced Nancy Pelosi’s gun-control agenda, banned bump stocks, pushed for enhanced background checks, and expanding red flag laws.
- In addition to targeting the Second Amendment, Trump’s red flag laws also violated the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments’ guarantee of due process protection.
- Under the banner of “sensible gun control,” Trump proposed using home-based technology such as Apple Watches, Amazon Echo, and Google Home to spy on people and collect data to identify individuals who exhibit characteristics of mental illness that could lead to violent behavior in violation of the Fourth Amendment.
Unfortunately, Trump’s hatred for the Constitution while in office went beyond the Bill of Rights. For example, in a rant after he was forced to cancel his plans to host the 2020 G7 at his golf club in Florida, he blamed Article 1 Section 9 of the Constitution (Emoluments Clause) for ruining his big payday. Trump called the constitutional restriction that prevents him from using the presidency for personal financial gain “phony.”
This is Donald Trump. This is the consequence of Trump’s lies and conspiracies. This is the result of Republicans putting partisanship above principle. This is, literally, the face of the post-constitutional Republican Party rebranded in the image of a Trump dictatorship.
Unfortunately, Trump’s word is gospel to the cult and the army of Trumpists who dominate the Republican Party, and that means this isn’t over . . . and won’t be over for a long, long time.
David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative. He holds people of every political stripe accountable for their failure to uphold conservative values, and he promotes those values instead of political parties.
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