By Myles Hoenig
In many ways, the 2020 election is already rigged. It first started with the Democrats preventing the powerful voice of Bernie Sanders from being heard. They weren’t as obvious as in 2016 when they closed polling stations or purged voters from the rolls that would likely have supported him over Hillary Clinton. This time they brought in all the high-powered political weapons they could muster to prevent a surging Sanders win in order to bring in the favorite but lackluster and utterly conservative Joe Biden.
Their main weapon was former President Obama, who for three and a half years, with all the horrors that Trump could muster, remained silent until it was necessary to protect Wall Street from a moderately progressive candidate to win the nomination and very likely, if not probably, win the White House.
Another successful attempt at rigging this 2020 election is for many Democratic state parties suing the Green Party from even being on the ballot. This is an obvious attack on people who would not vote for Biden or Trump but whose interests are not the same as Wall Street and the war machine. For many of these voters, they may feel now the only choice they have is Biden, even though the majority of Green voters vote Green, not as a protest, but out of conviction, something the Democrats cannot understand.
So what about the Republicans? Are they and how are they rigging this election? In one way, not even having a platform to campaign on other than Trump himself, all the Republicans need to know is in itself a rigging. They are not giving voters who are on the fence any idea as to what they stand for, other than what Trump has been promoting for his entire term.
In a way, this is a rigging that benefits the Democrats. But the real national rigging starts with the pandemic, and how the Republican administration handled it. By letting it get out of control, more and more people are rightly afraid to go to the polls and vote in person. Those who do would more likely be Trump supporters, or those others forced by circumstances.
The second phase is more direct. Removing mail boxes, destroying mail sorters, reducing overtime for postal employees, and defunding the service are all efforts to prevent mail-in ballots from being counted in a timely manner. President Trump openly admitted that that was a motivating factor in these actions. Many who would mail in their ballots are those who won’t vote in person, who are mostly Republican voters. That is voter suppression.
Voter suppression and rigging of elections is as American as apple pie. The electoral system that we have encourages it in many ways. What will work for either Biden or Trump is their GOTV effort, the Get Out the Vote.
Myles Hoenig is a political analyst in Baltimore, Maryland. He ran for Congress in 2016 as a Green Party candidate.