Ya know, the funny thing about history is, it kind of takes a while. Like a fine single malt, it has to age properly before it can be fully appreciated. There is no way that two years counts as history, it’s more like “recent memory.” But with cartoon caricatures of human beings like Donald Trump and Brian Kemp, if things break the right way, the only phrase that may fit is :history repeats itself.”
Let’s fire up a playlist, pop in our ear buds, and jog back those two short years. Donald Trump was running for President, and he was having some problems. It turns out that the actual Republican party wasn’t that thrilled with the churlish buffoon that had suddenly plopped, like a cow pie, into their midst. There was talk of a mutiny in the “traditional” GOP, finding ways to stop Trump from wrecking their chances in the post Obama election. But Trump was having none of it. In a childish tantrum (as usual), Trump accused the RNC of a conspiracy against him, and not only would he not accept the legitimacy of the results if they went against him, he’d run as an independent in the general election, and screw the party good. In short, if he didn’t win, it didn’t count.
Then came the fall of 2016. Trump and his campaign were being treated as the doltish joke that they were, and he trailed, in some cases badly in all of the polls. For Trump, if it works once (like screwing vendors), keep doing it until it doesn’t work anymore. Again, Trump threatened that if he lost the general election (which he did by a cool 3 million votes), he’d refuse to accept the election results as legitimate. Like Hillary Clinton really wanted a phone call from “The Undertaker” of electoral politics, spoiling her victory celebration.
Now, change the playlist, pop those ear buds back in, and let’s jog back to today. As Democrat Stacey Abrams continues to be an albatross around his neck, and as early voting in Georgia continues to show surging turnout from infrequent and first time voters, Kemp is facing an actual defeat, either on Tuesday, or in the run off on December 4th. And apparently, Brian Kemp took his lessons in electoral etiquette from none other than Donald “Miss(ed) Manners” Trump.
As last weekend drew to a close, Kemp heaved up a pathetically lame Hail Mary pass. he had his Secretary of State office officially announce that they suspected that the Georgia Democratic party had attempted to hack into the Georgia voter registration system. His office had begun an investigation into the allegations, and had asked the FBI to investigate as well. This pathetic claim was made without a shred of proof from Kemp or his office, and NBC News credibly claimed that what may have happened was that his office was contacted over the weekend by a third party, pointing out gaping holes in the states electronic security system, with accompanying proof, and Kemp used that information to fabricate his claim.
Here is why this matters, and it’s not so lame that it’s funny. Let’s say that Stacey Abrams wins the election outright tonight. Normal protocol would be that in approximately 2-3 weeks from election night, the state would “certify” the results, making the election official. But who certifies the election results? Why, the Secretary of States office of course. And if Brian Kemp loses tonight by any kind of a close margin, what do you want to bet that his office refuses to certify the election results, due to the fact that his “investigation” into the claim of Democratic hacking hasn’t been completed yet. And if he pulls that lame stunt, does anybody here have any doubt whatsoever that our whack-a-mole, conspiracy nut President would throw the entire weight of the White House behind this 3 card Monte scam?
And it wouldn’t have to be just Kemp’s race that could be affected either. What if Karen Handel loses her incumbent House seat, especially if the Democrats barely take over the House? Even state legislative seats could be thrown into question. And you can bet that Gozer the Destructor in the White House would make daily pronouncements from the Presidential bedroom about the Democrats trying to “steal the election.”
With Trump in 2016, the joke was hilarious on its face, simply because the system was there to check him, he couldn’t control the outcome. But in Georgia tonight, Brian Kemp is the system! We’ve already had a Presidential election decided by the Supreme Court, and it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if Kemp tried the same damn tactic at the state level. And here, you thought that all you had to worry about was if we flipped the House or not.
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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.