No more terrifying words have ever been spoken.
In a secret audio recording released by Mother Jones, neo-Nazi schemer and provocateur Steve Bannon detailed on Oct. 31, 2020, the plan for stealing the 2020 election, if need be.
People assume that what Bannon’s talking about is that Donald Trump would be term-limited after his “win” in 2020, and couldn’t run for a third term. But I think it’s scarier than that.
Remember, in October 2020, generals, left and right, began — out of the blue — to make public statements that the U.S. military does not, and never has, become involved in elections. Why would they make these announcements unless someone had asked them to do precisely that?
And Trump never gave up on his dream to get that military coup for himself. As the January 6 Committee hearings have made nauseatingly clear, Trump held out hope that he could still get out the National Guard to fight on his behalf if Vice President Mike Pence were whisked away by Secret Service agents, maimed, or killed.
On the day before Jan. 6, Senator Charles Grassley let slip that he would be presiding over the Electoral College vote. “Well, first of all, I will be — if the Vice President isn’t there, and we don’t expect him to be there — I will be presiding over the Senate,” he said. Wait! Why would you expect him not to be there?
There’s only one condition that would allow for Grassley presiding: if both the vice president and the Speaker of the House were incapacitated or dead. Grassley later said it was a “misunderstanding.” I’m sure. Grassley misunderstood and thought Pence was in on the coup and would skip the Electoral College certification.
Even into Jan. 6, Trump thought he could forestall the election certification by declaring martial law and keeping power that way. With the sycophantic Jeffrey Clark — or a different lickspittle — Trump could have said that we’d put things off until the rioting stopped — making sure that it never did.
What? The Koch Machine, Peter Thiel, that Publix heiress, or the Mercers wouldn’t pour money into such a campaign? Oligarchs thrive when there’s disruption and authoritarianism looks more appealing. And once you’ve taken power illegally, you drift into making the case on why you should keep power illegally.
This is a man who claimed he could “negotiate” for additional terms of office, like his BFFs Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and Kim Jong-un. I really believe that Bannon believed that, if they played their cards right, Trump could stay in office until death. After all, Trump said he “deserved” three terms, and I’m sure he could come up with excuses why he should be dictator president for life. You’ve seen his ultra-MAGAs; the excuses wouldn’t even have to be plausible. “Rain’s predicted on Inauguration Day, and I can’t get my coiffed hair wet” would do.
If Trump wins in 2024, what do you think he will do in 2028?
People are giving Trump and Bannon the benefit of the doubt. That’s never been a good idea before, and it isn’t now.
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