American Failsafes: How Congress and the Military Could Save the World from a Donald Trump Presidency

Narcissistic racist misogynist scam artist Donald Trump is running for President. While everyone initially thought it was a publicity stunt and a joke, Trump has become the sole Republican candidate.

We are now realizing it is not a joke. There is a very real possibility that this man – who says whatever he wants without checking facts, who lets his campaign people assault journalists and then gaslights them and any witnesses, who has called Mexicans drug dealers and rapists, threatened the mass deportation of Muslims, and has claimed that soldiers who are captured don’t deserve to be called heroes – will become president of the United States of America.

But don’t fret, America.

Hope is not lost.

And you can partly thank your Founding Fathers.

The Founding Fathers were not perfect. They said that “All men are created equal” when what they meant was “All men are created equal except for women, blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans.”

It took almost a hundred years after the Declaration of Independence for slavery to be abolished and almost two hundred for women to get the vote. In that time, Native Americans were brought to the brink of extinction in mass genocide campaigns and those of Spanish origin were forced off their land.

Despite all their shortcomings, the Founding Fathers provided the United States with one very important aspect of your political system.

They gave you a failsafe.

They gave their new country a system of government that would make sure that its leader would not have absolute power once elected.

They did this with the creation of Congress.

Congress is the American federal legislature consisting of two houses: The House of Representatives, and The Senate. Senators and members of the House of Representatives – known as Congressmen – are elected by the people of their respective states. Senators are elected for six-year terms, and Congressmen for two-year terms. Any federal bill proposed in the United States must get through these two houses in order to become law.

That means that if Donald Trump tried to do something ridiculous (besides running for President) like proposing a bill that would force Mexican Americans to pay for that wall he’s proposing, the bill would have to be passed by Congress in order to become law. If both houses vote against the law, the bill dies.

If there is one thing this election has taught us thus far, it’s that American politicians are united in their dislike of Donald Trump. Democrats are outraged and insulted by his very presence in the elections. Republicans are embarrassed by him. Both sides recognize how preposterous Trump’s policy ideas are and their representatives may be in the best position to save America from itself.

Now let’s say Trump doesn’t like a proposed law. Let’s say Congress decides to pass a law forgiving debts accrued by people who needed to pay for health care. Congress passes the bill and Trump gets wind and decides to tell the bill it’s fired by using his Presidential Veto to kill it. If Congress is really determined to pass a law vetoed by the president, there is a failsafe for that too.

Congress can overturn a presidential veto with a two thirds majority vote in both houses. This may seem like a tall order in a country where Democrats and Republicans can’t agree on anything, but it’s possible a reality TV show star has finally found something to unite them. The possibility that Congress can come together to overthrow a presidential veto isn’t that outlandish provided the one using the veto is Donald Trump.

Now let’s talk about nukes.

There has been a lot of talk about Donald Trump’s gung-ho attitude about nuclear weapons. From all reports, he clearly has no understanding of why using nuclear weapons is dangerous and should be avoided. Fortunately for the world, the buttons for launching the nukes are protected by the US military, and Trump seems to be doing everything he can to alienate them.

Yes, some veterans’ groups have come out in favour of Donald Trump. They don’t like that the US is cutting back on its military and think that Trump would somehow restore it to its former glory.

But there are many in active service who are deeply incensed by Trump’s remarks about the military. They are insulted by his claim that attending New York Military Academy gave him “more training militarily than a lot of the guys that go into the military.” They are insulted by his claim that Senator John McCain, a former naval officer who was captured by the North Vietnamese and tortured for six years, is “not a war hero” because he got captured.

Most know that Trump got the rich-boy ticket out of serving in Vietnam. And they are not going to let this man do what he wants if he becomes Commander-In-Chief.

On August 4, 2016, a group of veterans showed up on Capitol Hill to urge Republicans to withdraw their support of Donald Trump. Alexander McCoy, a former sergeant in the marines told reporters:

“Donald Trump’s reckless ignorance about America’s responsibility to the world shocks me to the core … I am done listening. I have heard enough.”

Fortunately, many in active service have heard enough too.

If Trump succeeds at rallying enough self-hating women, racists, and wealthy people to vote him into office, we can take comfort in the fact that American nuclear weapons are guarded by people sworn to protect their country.

The military is made up of people who are trained to recognize when someone is dangerously unfit for command and unable to make rational decisions. The military is trained to recognize when someone is endangering their country and the world and to act accordingly to stop them.

People are scared of Donald Trump, but we can take comfort in the fact that America has a system in place that can save it from itself. Let’s hope they don’t have to use it.

One comment

  • Good points legal-wise though I would argue this applies much more to Clinton than Trump. She wields exceptional power (on record) with the agencies mentioned whereas Trump wields little & behind his rhetoric is by far the better listener & delegator of the two candidates. Clinton frankly is frightening, just going on the small bit we have on record. So I hope these legal protections contra prez ring true though in both directions.

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