L. Neil Smith's THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 894, October 16, 2016
The Real Presidential Election
by J. Neil Schulman
Special to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise
My fellow Americans.
No, wait. This is written also for the unAmerican.
What happens at the polls on November 8, 2016 in the U.S. presidential election simply does not matter.
It’s not unimportant because balloting itself will be tampered with, which is how the media spin it when Donald Trump says the election is rigged.
Uh-uh. The fix is in for the popular voting because both the major political parties and the free press necessary for anything approaching “honest” elections have been corrupted, not allowing for a fair process—for example, not including Libertarian Gary Johnson, a candidate on all 50 state ballots, in the crucial televised debates.
Additionally, none of the cultural traditions that kept debates focused on policy issues exist anymore.
At this moment the media are focused on making the October 18, 2016 final presidential debate mostly about Donald Trump’s sex life.
The major media ignore all the Wikileaks documents from Hillary Clinton and her supporters, just as the Obama/Lynch Justice Department earlier directed the FBI to do.
The Clinton campaign—in coordination with major media—accuse Donald Trump of being paranoid when he talks about their obvious coordination while, simultaneously, Hillary and her supporters talking about Trump conspiring with Putin sound like Robert Welch of the John Birch Society accusing President Dwight Eisenhower of being a Russian stooge.
In a coordinated attack designed to bury Hillary-damaging Wikileaks the major media are obsessing over the endless Clinton-supporters claiming Trump molested them. Liberal/feminist attorney Gloria Allred getting involved is a clear indicator of the set-up.
Then consider the episode of NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit Season 18, Episode 6: “Rape Interrupted,” scheduled to air Nov 2, 2016—six days before the election. Here’s IMDb’s description of “Rape Interrupted”: “A politician’s campaign is jeopardized when several women come forward with damaging accusations.” Such an episode had to be scripted months ago. NBC, the network which aired The Apprentice series and was the employer of Billy Bush, certaintly knew about the Access Hollywood tape for a very long time.
The coordinated media-smear strategy was simple.
Step One was release of the illegally made Access Hollywood tape. Unless the recording was made with all parties’ explicit consent the taping was illegal under California law. On this private recording Donald Trump bragged to Billy Bush about what a stud The Donald thought he was, even as Trump told Bush a story about a married woman who said no and whom Trump did not have sex with but whom Trump says he ended up taking furniture shopping.
Step Two was when Anderson Cooper relentlessly asked Trump in Debate 2—interrupting Trump three times to force an answer—if any of the braggadocio on the tape was true. Cooper and his handlers had to know Trump would have no choice but to deny committing anything that could be spun as sexual assaults.
Then in Step Three major media unleashed what the Clintons charmingly called “bimbo eruptions” when it was about Bill Clinton—female accusers.
Nazi Germany’s propaganda master Joseph Goebbels would have been more subtle.
But here’s the ultimate reason the November 8, 2016 election doesn’t really matter.
The American people do not elect the President of the United States the way they elect United States senators, federal, state, and local representatives, governors, mayors, sheriffs, and dog catchers.
The real and only binding presidential election in 2016 takes place on December 12th when the Electoral College votes.
The 538 Electors chosen by voters to cast presidential and vice- presidential ballots in the Electoral College have zero legal obligation to vote for the candidate they’re theoretically pledged to vote for. There is no penalty if they don’t.
If somehow, despite the media’s best efforts, Trump’s November 8th popular vote is like the surprise upset of Great Britain’s Brexit vote and despite media-commissioned polling is greater than Hillary Clinton’s numbers, then changing the Electoral College electors’ vote will be trumpeted as necessary by all major media.
If the electors selected don’t give Hillary Clinton the 270 pledged votes she needs to win I have zero doubt that the Democratic/ liberal/ progressive/ Clintonista/ left would encourage electors pledged to other candidates to come over to them.
Another long-standing American political tradition will be dead.
Republican Elector Roger MacBride taught us the freedom of the Elector in 1972 when he broke his pledge to vote for Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew, instead casting his electoral ballot for Libertarians John Hospers and Tonie Nathan.
The media is currently so focused on the November 8 balloting they’ve forgotten the popular vote is not how the United States elects its president and vice president.
The Electors of the Electoral College pick the president.
Just because electors have traditionally voted as they have promised in the past means absolutely nothing in the unprecedented presidential election of 2016.
Every instinct tells me that the only people who have to be convinced of anything this time are the electors.
And nobody has even polled them.
Note: After reading the above several correspondents in email and on Facebook have pointed me to articles discussing 34 states that “bind” electors and impose legal penalties (usually fines maxing out at $1000) for “faithless electors.”
First, most legal scholars conclude such laws are unconstitutional and unenforceable, Second, not a felony. Those states usually max out with a $1000 fine—and withdrawing money prematurely from a CD or prematurely switching to an alternate satellite TV or cell phone company usually has the new company picking up the penalty. Out of the 538 electors only several might have to go against their state law and with a 4-4 Supreme Court it’s all politics anyway.
“Indeed, when it comes down to it, electors are ultimately free to vote for whom they personally prefer, despite the general public’s desire.”—Fair Vote—States that Bind Electors
As I wrote in response to an email earlier today:
Party pledges of supporting the party’s nominee were obtained from all primary candidates including Jeb Bush and John Kasich, both of whom reneged on supporting nominee Donald Trump with no party penalty. Such party pledges from electors are likewise meaningless and unenforceable beyond an elector perhaps not being selected again and that’s a big, “So what?”
Fines likewise would be paid by the team acquiring the elector’s vote, just like a new cell phone company offers to pay the remainder of your contract to your old cell phone company if you switch.
Nullification of a “faithless elector’s” vote? That will be decided by a 4-4 Supreme Court—that is, left undecided and the vote left intact.
© 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 The J. Neil Schulman Living Trust. All rights reserved. Web and email links with attribution permitted and encouraged. Other reprints permitted only with prior permission of the author.
Reprinted from J. Neil Schulman @ Agorist.com
Was that worth reading?
Then why not:
Just click the red box (it's a button!) to pay the author
This site may receive compensation if a product is purchased
through one of our partner or affiliate referral links. You
already know that, of course, but this is part of the FTC Disclosure
Policy found here. (Warning: this is a 2,359,896-byte 53-page PDF file!)