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Spectre of Election Day Meltdown in the United States

As the United States gears up for presidential elections in November, a review of its electoral processes suggests a deepening structural crisis, which, along with the fractured political and social scenario in the country, has laid bare the hubris of “American exceptionalism.”

On the cusp of the presidential election, a nightmare is haunting the United States (US). This was, perhaps, best summed up by this headline of the Atlantic magazine: “The Election That Could Break America.” The ­article speculated that if the vote is a close one, Donald Trump could easily throw the election into chaos and subvert the result and that who will stop him in such a scenario (Gellman 2020). Recently, a book has come up with the title “Will He Go: Trump and the Looming Election Meltdown in 2020.” Its reviewer reminded the readers that

[Donald Trump] has flouted nearly every norm of American political life: using the White House for campaign events, threatening to jail his opponent, calling members of Congress “treasonous” for not applauding his speeches, invi­ting foreign intervention in our electoral process, undermining the independence of the Justice Department’s prosecutorial decisions, using the presidency to promote his business interests, praising autocrats while denigrating our allies. (Karlan 2020)

And Trump, more than once, has unambiguously indicated that he will not accept election results if he loses. So, it is not surprising that, of late, the US public sphere has been agog with speculations that President may try to use military against the protestors who will definitely take to the streets if Trump declares himself victorious even before each and every vote is counted (Abramsky 2020a).

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Updated On : 28th Oct, 2020

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