Trump Authoritarianism: How Far Will Democrats Allow Him To Go?

Trump Executive Order, August 8, 2020

With 2020 being the year of the Coronavirus; national vote-by-mail in November has become a very hot topic, and President Donald J. Trump has consistently, and falsely been claiming that vote-by-mail will lead to massive voter fraud, with zero evidence. This comes from the man who said in an interview with Fox News that if we had vote-by-mail, “you’d never have a Republican elected in this country again“, which is likely true, as voter suppression is the only reason Republicans have held onto power for so long.

Over the weekend, Trump signed four executive orders, covering, a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, a deferral on student loan payments, and an extension to the federal unemployment benefits, albeit at half the previous rate, just $300 a week, and a deferral of payroll taxes from September 1, 2020, until December 31, 2020, including potential tax forgiveness for that time period.

On the face of it that sounds good, except that anything budgetary has to be passed by Congress, more than likely, these executive orders are illegal and unenforceable. The big one is the payroll tax deferment; which means, being deferred, it has to be paid back at some point, more than likely robbing people of part or all of their tax refunds. Yes, the memo linked above mentions tax forgiveness, but it only states the Secretary of the Treasury shall explore avenues, on tax forgiveness, not a guarantee of forgiveness.

But, the most concerning thing is that Trump openly said “If I’m victorious on November 3rd, I plan to forgive these taxes and make permanent cuts to the payroll tax”. This will be disastrous for the 20% of US citizens who rely on social security in one form or another, just to survive, which will affect more Republican voters than Democrats, as red states are often the poorest, least affluent states.

Moving on to the US Postal Service, which is now overseen by a Trump donor, Louis DeJoy, who promptly made big changes to the USPS, which will no doubt slow ballots and services in general, before firing or reassigning 23 USPS executives. It gets worse, Trump straight up said that he plans to withhold funding for the USPS in an effort to stop, or at least hinder the USPS ability to send out and return mail-in ballots.

Trump said; “They want $25 billion for the post office. Now, they need that money in order to have the post office work so it can take all of these millions and millions of ballots. Now, in the meantime, they aren’t getting there. But if they don’t get those two items, that means you can’t have universal mail-in voting because they’re not equipped to have it.”, continuing, “If we don’t make a deal, that means they don’t get the money. That means they can’t have universal mail-in voting. They just can’t have it.”

Republicans are known for their voter disenfranchisement, gerrymandering, and voter suppression, but Trump’s actions are a complete subversion of the voting system, manipulating the postal service to stop people from exercising their constitutional right. And, what will the Democrats do? lip service, ultimately doing nothing, just like they did for the past 3 1/2 years. The impeachment was a joke, the articles of impeachment were weak, Democrats had 10 times more damning charges they could have brought.

At this point, I have zero faith that our Congress, no matter whether red or blue, are willing to represent the people and do what is best for the United States of America and it’s citizens. There is even concern that if Trump loses, he will refuse to leave office; and the military won’t forcibly remove him from the White House. I really hope that our military will do the right thing and uphold their constitutional oath.

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