We have got to be crazy to allow Donald Trump on the ballot

Posted 1/2/24

It’s hard for me to fathom what I am hearing from grown-up Americans.

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We have got to be crazy to allow Donald Trump on the ballot


It’s hard for me to fathom what I am hearing from grown-up Americans. Democrats of all stripes join with Republicans in predicting Donald Trump will soon be the shoo-in Republican candidate for president in 2024. In their minds, he apparently has an inalienable right to run for office even though already found liable and fined for civil sexual assault, found liable and soon to be fined for large-scale business fraud, and likely soon-to-be convicted of some or all of 91 felony counts of breaking the criminal law.

It is clear that nary a Republican or Democrat and nary a news media anchor or talk show host in this country has ever read a serious book about Athenian, Roman, Israelite, or Anglo-Saxon democracy. Throughout its history, democracy has always been defined by its fierce protection of the processes of people’s government. Democracy does not allow anyone to appear on a ballot for any office of public trust who is an inveterate liar and sexual predator, a financial fraudster, a civil insurrectionist who interferes in sacred state election procedures and inspires mayhem and civil riot at a perilous moment in a national election process, a thief of protected government documents, a friend of foreign autocrats and mobsters, or a citizen who pays thousand-dollar-an hour lawyers millions to delay actions in civil and criminal courts for years. It simply cannot happen in any sane democratic republic.

Athens and Rome, the prototypes for our own republican system of representative government, regularly impeached politicians who committed malfeasance while in office or committed public or private crimes while wooing the electorate while not in office. Greece and Rome first suspended their civil rights, next sequestered or expropriated their wealth, and finally sent them packing into mandatory exile for years or forever. They lost civil rights when they offended civil statutes.

The idea that nobody is above the law in a democracy was first clearly validated in the Hebrew republic, which began around 1,200 BCE, some 600 years before Athenian and Roman democracy. Aaron Wildavsky, a past President of the American Political Science association, wrote a book titled Moses as Political Leader (Shalem, 2005). He called our attention to the fact that even Moses was impeached by the Israelite people late in his career for an offence at the “waters of Meribah.” God commanded that Moses not be allowed to cross-over Jordan and enter the Promised Land with the rest of the twelve tribes. To “go before God” in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament meant going to court. If the very highly moral Moses was first impeached, and then found guilty and exiled by his own Hebrew republic, how can a modern democracy let an inveterate liar and ignoramus like Donald Trump run for school board let alone President of the United States?

Democrats and many Republicans today sit on their hands hoping that criminal courts will convict Donald Trump before the election of some of the 91 charges currently pending against him and thus remove some of the luster of his popularity as a candidate before November 2024. Folks, his popularity is not the issue. His civil right to run for office is the issue. We have laws saying convicted or imprisoned felons cannot vote. That also implies they cannot run for or hold public office as well. Imagine disqualifying a prisoner from voting but allowing him to run sacred public operations from a prison cell. That’s what cartel thugs do, not American civil servants.

Fellow Americans, Donald Trump cannot be on the ballot in 2024 in any state devoted to rule of law, not merely because it would be political suicide for a nation to bestow a full slate of civil rights upon a multiply indicted or freshly convicted criminal (a likely outcome in one or more of the criminal trials). He cannot be on the ballot also because it would demonstrate something even worse, that neither of our two hallowed political parties has enough constitutional intelligence to understand or courage to deal with aspiring leaders who intend to dispense with law and rule like a medieval king or an Oriental despot.

If state legislatures do not already have them, they need to enact laws suspending or ending the civil right to vote and run for office for civil fraudsters and criminal felons of any race, gender, ethnicity, or national origin.

Donald Trump, politics, government, opinion, president, candidates