House Majority Whip James Clyburn Fears the United States Could Become the Next Weimar Republic
House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) said Tuesday night that he is concerned that the United States is “teetering” on the bring of falling into a fascist dictatorship reminiscent of Adolf Hitler’s ascent to power in 1932, as President Donald Trump and the sycophantic Republican Party pull out all the stops to overturn the results of the 2020 election.
Trump lost the election to President-Elect Joe Biden, both in the Electoral College (306-232) and the national popular vote. But Trump and the GOP have committed to using legal maneuvers – most of which lack credulity – to keep Trump in power.
Clyburn told CNN host Chris Cuomo that he sees parallels between what is happening in the United States today and Hitler’s takeover of the Weimar Republic after getting elected chancellor of Germany.
“I’ve been telling people for a long time now, I’m beginning to see what happened in Germany back in the 1930’s. I never thought that could happen in this country. How do you elect a person president, then all of a sudden you’re going to give him the authority to be dictator? That’s what you’re teetering on here,” Clyburn said.
“That’s what Hitler did in Germany. He was elected chancellor, and then because he successfully discredited the news media, took over the churches – I cannot see that happening here. It may happen,” the South Carolina Democrat continued. “But if it did, that means that the American people are much more, or less, I should say, intelligent than I think they are.”
Watch below, courtesy of The Independent:
Clyburn is not pulling this out of thin air. Hitler did not become a dictator through extra-legal means – everything he did to amass absolute power was within the bounds of the Weimar constitution.
One of the tactics Trump and the Republicans are employing – the appointment of loyal electors in battleground states like Pennsylvania – has much greater potential to succeed than the flurry of frivolous lawsuits that have already indundated the courts. Incredibly, that insidiousness is permitted under the United States Constitution.
American presidents are chosen by the Electoral College, which is comprised of electors, whom voters in individual states choose when they case a ballot. Typically, these electors follow the will of the people in each state. But that is not set in stone.
Barton Gellman explained in The Atlantic back in September how the GOP could exploit obscure legal loopholes to thwart the democratic process:
The most significant risk is that Trump will ask Republican allies in battleground states to appoint Trump electors regardless of the outcome. We’re accustomed to choosing electors by popular vote, but the Supreme Court has said a state legislature may take back that power from the people and name any electors it likes.
According to a legal adviser to Trump and three top Republican leaders in Pennsylvania, they are already discussing contingency plans to set aside the voting results – by claiming the vote count is rigged. Republicans control the House and Senate in all six of the most closely contested swing states.
As previously mentioned, those gears are already turning in swing states like Pennsylvania, which Trump won in 2016 but lost in 2020:
What frightens me is that Trump has the power, with only modest help from GOP elected officials, to throw the outcome into doubt and to keep it unresolved almost indefinitely. And if he throws the decision to Congress, which he can do almost at will, the law is a labyrinth full of dead ends when it comes to how that’s resolved. Experts tell me that the Electoral Count Act is so garbled and full of logic bombs that it can easily lead to deadlock.
If two men show up to be sworn in on January 20, the chaos candidate and the commander in chief will be the same man.
Trump’s refusal to concede, coupled with his threat that there will not be a peaceful transfer of power if he loses and his baseless allegations that the election was rigged, means that the next few weeks will test our institutions like never before.
Without people of good character to uphold it, the Constitution is only a piece of paper, and the GOP has demonstrated that their allegiance to Trump towers above all else.
Seventy days until the inauguration.