I woke up with a presidential election nightmare scenario in my head. Imagine this:
The morning of November 4, swing states Florida and North Carolina are called for Joe Biden. Swing states Georgia, Ohio, Iowa, and Texas are called for Trump. Votes in Maine congressional district 2, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Arizona are projected to take days or even weeks to count, leaving those states uncalled, with exit polls showing Biden up by at least 5% in all of them. This produces the following map:
Click the map to create your own at 270toWin.com
With 277 electoral votes, Joe Biden clears the magic 270 number needed to be declared the winner of the election. He is announced as president-elect and Kamala Harris vice-president elect.
The Senate looks to have a floor of a 51-49 Democratic majority and could go as high as 54-46 Democrats after mail-in votes are tallied. With Kamala Harris as the tie-breaking vote and a projected Democratic gain of 5-15 seats in the House, Republicans’ days of influence in Washington are numbered.
On Tuesday, November 10, Justice Clarence Thomas announces his retirement from the Supreme Court. Seeing the blue wave, Thomas, 72 and the court’s longest-serving justice at 29 years, realizes he could be in his mid-80s before another Republican president returns to the office. He therefore decides to step down so that outgoing President Trump can pick Thomas’ successor as a final act, cementing the GOP’s influence on the high court for possibly another 30 to 40 years.
Seething with anger at America’s rejection, Trump no longer feels the need to nominate a highly accomplished jurist to the bench. His only decision is whether his nomination should reward a crony or act as a form of revenge on the voters who ousted him.
Option 1: Ivanka
Trump probably sees his daughter more as a future president than a Supreme Court justice, but hey, you take what you can get. Besides, Ivanka is young, turning 39 the day before Halloween. She could serve on the court for 20 years then resign and run for president as the grand old dame of the Republican party, or the conservative party that exists in 2040 following the implosion of the GOP.
Option 2: Don Jr.
Realizing that Ivanka is the only junior Trump with even half a brain, Donald decides she is too good for America. He wants to dumb down the Supreme Court with a justice who is completely incompetent, and whose incompetence is he more convinced of than his eldest son? Alternately Eric could be the pick; they’re interchangeable.
Option 3: Kanye West
What would be a better f-you to the voting public than to nominate a possibly insane celebrity to the highest court in the land? In doing so, Trump could say thanks to Kanye for his attempt to run interference in the 2020 presidential election. If Kanye doesn’t want the job, Dennis Rodman would be a possible substitute. Wouldn’t Kim Jong-un be thrilled?
Option 4: Pick ’em, Putin
One of Trump’s very real fears is that at 12:01 PM on January 20, 2021, indictments will be unsealed, outlining his business ties to the Russian mob. Those folks don’t particularly like having their secrets brought to public light. So Trump makes a deal with Daddy Vladdy to spare his life in exchange for letting Putin pick the next Supreme Court nominee, giving Russia influence in yet another branch of American government.
Option 5: Donald Trump
Trump announces that, pending confirmation of his own nomination by the outgoing Senate, he will step down as president and accept the open seat on the Supreme Court. Mitch McConnell, incensed at the loss of his position as Senate majority leader, rams the confirmation process through in December, with defeated senator Lindsey Graham promising “a confirmation so fast, you’ll think the Road Runner is voting.”
If confirmed, Trump will resign early, making Mike Pence the 46th president of the United States for a few weeks. Speculation will run high on whether a sitting Supreme Court justice can be indicted for crimes, and if so, will Trump eventually vote to overturn his own convictions? Meanwhile, all eyes will turn to outgoing Senator Susan Collins of Maine, her seat to be turned over to a Democrat in January. As the key 50th vote to confirm the Trumpster, what will she want her legacy to be?
Whew! All this speculation has me worn out! I’m going to hit Publish and then turn the keyboard over to my writing assistant for the Wednesday news.