Democracy in the United States has long been regarded as the great, shining example for many countries around the world. No longer. That U.S. President Donald Trump would prematurely declare himself the winner of the presidential election and accuse his political opponents of fraud, even though hundreds of thousands of ballots still haven't been counted, is grotesque, absurd -- and anti-democratic.
Specially if we consider that besides having two decide between two intellectual nullities to command their national destiny ...
Der Spiegel trying to clickbait the lede or something? That first sentence strikes me as almost Trumpishly inaccurate.
The word 'democracy' is yakked about in the US of A but in practice and history a farce.
When you hear Americans saying they have a Democracy......it isn't a true Democracy they're speaking of, it's only an American version/type/form of Democracy.....not a true "Majority Rules" Democracy practiced elsewhere.
Six states to decide the electionJoe Biden is now the favorite to win the presidency, and Republicans are favored to keep Senate control -- but both results are far from certain. And Democrats failed to win the resounding victory that pre-election polls had suggested they could.Here's where we stand after a topsy-turvy election night, in which the situation shifted multiple times:The outcome is unclear in six swing states -- Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin -- and all are still counting votes. We may get some final vote counts today, while others could take a few days."Biden's the favorite, even if narrowly, just about everywhere," Nate Cohn of The Times tweeted, listing five of the six states above (all but North Carolina). Sean Trende of RealClearPolitics agreed: "Would probably rather be Biden than Trump."The outstanding ballots are mostly mail-in ballots, which are likely to favor Biden, because more Democrats than Republicans voted early this year. He leads in the current vote count in Nevada and Wisconsin, while Trump leads in the remaining four. "I don't think people have fully internalized how Democratic these mail and absentee ballots will be in MI/PA/WI," Nate wrote.If Biden holds onto his lead in Nevada and Wisconsin, he would need to win only one of three states -- Georgia, Michigan or Pennsylvania -- to secure a majority of electoral votes (and could still lose North Carolina).The counting of ballots seems likely to be slowest in Michigan and Pennsylvania. Officials in Pennsylvania have said they expect all votes to be counted by Friday.Even with Biden's seeming advantages at this point, the country has never experienced an election with such heavy voting by mail, which creates significant uncertainty. It is entirely possible that Trump will retain his lead in the states where he now leads and win the election.The situation in the Senate is different -- and more favorable to Republicans. They appear to be in a strong position to retain Senate control, which would give them a veto over nearly all of a President Biden's legislative plans.Democrats needed to win at least five of the 14 competitive Senate races and have so far won only two. Six races remain up in the air. The only incumbent Republicans to have lost are Martha McSally in Arizona and Cory Gardner in Colorado.[New York Times, newsletter... }
Joseph R. Biden Jr. was affirmed as the president-elect on Monday as members of the Electoral College pushed him past the 270 threshold to win the White House, all but ending a disruptive chapter in American history in which President Trump sought to use legal challenges and political pressure to overturn the results of a free and fair election.The president-elect passed the threshold after California cast its 55 votes for Mr. Biden on Monday evening, capping a day marked by heightened security in battleground states and an unusual level of scrutiny for what is normally a formal, procedural affair.
President Trump said on Monday that Attorney General William P. Barr would depart next week, ending a tenure marked by Mr. Barr's willingness to advance the president's political agenda and criticism that he eroded the post-Watergate independence of the Justice Department.Mr. Barr had in recent weeks fallen out of favor with the president after acknowledging that the department had found no widespread voter fraud, but Mr. Trump sought to play down their differences, saying in a tweet announcing Mr. Barr's departure, "Our relationship has been a very good one, he has done an outstanding job!"Still, his resignation allows Mr. Barr to avoid any confrontation with the president over his refusal to advance Mr. Trump's efforts to rewrite the election results.
Trump fires Barr for not pushing the voter fraud narrative blindly enough.
Mr. Barr, 70, who also served as attorney general in the George H. W. Bush administration, was viewed initially in Washington as a stabilizing force in the chaotic Trump era, but that expectation dissipated as he took aim at the Justice Department's own investigation into the Trump campaign's ties to Russia that had long antagonized the president. [Underlining added]
Magyar divides the autocrat's journey into three stages: autocratic attempt, autocratic breakthrough, and autocratic consolidation.
"The populist does not de jure eliminate the separation of powers," Magyar writes, "but he connects the branches through his competences of appointment in a single vertical of vassalage." The Russian President, Vladimir Putin, calls it the "vertical of power." What allows the aspiring autocrat to transform the institutions of government is either a supermajority in parliament or, in a presidential system, a monopoly on political power--a situation in which the Presidency and Congress are held by the same political parties. Americans aren't used to thinking of a monopoly on political power as a problem; on the contrary, we think that these are the conditions necessary for a President to be able to carry out his political agenda. In fact, with the power to confirm Presidential appointments concentrated in the Senate, Trump didn't even need the House. In four years, Trump has created a "vertical of vassalage" that runs from him to Barr to the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, and to the courts. Its extension is Fox News, which has served as the fourth branch of Trump's government.
And experts were warning even a decade before that American democracy was showing signs of trouble, as Amanda Taub and Max Fisher have written for The Times. "Constitutional scholars said that the bill was coming due for horse trading compromises the framers had made among one another 200 years earlier," they explain. "Political scientists said those founders' had built cracks into the system that had been slowly widening ever since."Two such cracks are the Senate and the Electoral College: They have always made American democracy unusually undemocratic, but in recent years they have made it even more so, and in ways that advantage Republicans: The Senate now heavily favors, more than it has before, a minority of voters controlling a majority of the seats, while the Electoral College has become more likely to deny victory to the winner of the popular vote.(email from the NYT)
"We will never give up, we will never concede," Mr. Trump told supporters gathered on the Ellipse near the White House around noon, as he implored Vice President Mike Pence and Republicans to work to overturn the election results. "You don't concede when there is theft involved."[...]City officials had braced for potential violence in a repeat of unrest stemming from earlier pro-Trump gatherings. As debate got under way on the House and Senate floors, a mob of protesters broke into the Cannon House Office Building, prompting police to order an internal evacuation. About an hour later, the chaos forced both chambers to recess.
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