The Rule Of Law is a lot like Hamlet. Well, it’s a lot like Hamlet’s dilemma: “To be or not to be”.
The Rule Of Law is like integrity that way — it’s an all or nothing proposition. Ever met anyone with, say, 90% of their integrity intact? “I trust John 90% of the time. It’s that 10% about him that worries me” is not something anyone has ever said. The instant mistrust appears in any way, shape or form? Trust is gone.
The Rule Of Law is pretty specific about most things (though, as we’re realizing, not specific enough about certain important things). It says what one cannot do and what should happen to them if they do those things anyway. One thing it says explicitly — it is against the Rule Of Law to solicit any kind of foreign help in any sort of American election.
There’s no wriggle room there. All v Nothing.
That means if Donald Trump — or anyone working with him or for him — sought or received any help whatsoever from anyone foreign, they broke the law. That means Trump’s campaign should have stopped right there, right then. How can an illegal campaign continue to run and be legit when it’s conspiring with a foreign country that’s created an actual plan to do do the literal thing it’s doing in order to disrupt America?
The answer is “it can’t”. That it did continue running — and that it “won” — shouldn’t make us shrug our shoulders in surrender, it should make us bristle.
Let’s come at this differently. It’s not an election. Let’s say you manufactured a winning lottery ticket that scored you $100 million bucks. The lottery’s rules say you can’t do that. If you make your own lottery ticket and claim the prize, you may be handed the prize but you did not “win” it. it’s not legitimately yours.
If the lottery agency figures out that you might have cheated — and they investigate — and discover that, yeah — YOU CHEATED — what do you suppose that lottery agency will do when they learn you’re guilty as charged? Will they let you keep the $100 million? You better believe they won’t.
That money’s coming back — and you’re going to prison.
Same token — and this is an example even Donald Trump can appreciate. Let’s make it a beauty pageant this time. Contestant T (for Trump) doesn’t play by the pageant’s rules which say pageant contestants can’t even talk to the judges before the contest. Instead, Contestant T seduces or pays off every single judge — and wins. Is that win legit? If the rest of the judges — or the pageant’s backers or advertisers — get wind, how will they feel? Will they agree that regardless of the rules being blatantly violated for the purposes of winning, nothing can be done and the (cheating) winner they crowned is the only person who can be winner now and — despite not winning fairly — will get to keep her crown and everything that went with it including money?
I doubt it.
An office is no different than a beauty pageant crown. If you broke the rules to get the crown, the crown does not belong to you.
Neither does anything that came with the crown. In the case of the presidency of the US, the crown comes with power. It comes with the AUTHORITY to nominate judges and sign legislation into law. But only if you HAVE THE AUTHORITY. If I show up at the airport wanting to stamp the passports of people entering the country, they’ll kick me out — I’ve got no training, no history, no authority to allow anyone into the country.
The same goes for Trump. If he was never the legitimate potus then he never had any of the authority a legitimate potus has. If he never had the authority, then nothing he’s done has been authorized by We The People. Without that authority, those judges & legislation have no legitimacy.
As former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner has pointed out, an awful lot of Donald Trump’s lifetime nominees to the federal bench went before the Senate — for their nomination hearings — and lied through their teeth. They perjured themselves repeatedly. That means they can be impeached — and they most definitely WILL be impeached. Or voided.
Donald Trump — the Projector-In-Chief — has projected his own illegitimacy from the moment he was sworn in before a teeny tiny crowd. It’s about damned time we listened to him.