The 2024 US Presidential Election

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This is where the 6-3 majority is critical for the authoritarians. 5-4 wasn't sufficient, because it only takes 4 justices to agree to take a case. With a 6-3 majority they can simply avoid ruling on a case, when they're worried they'd have to overturn the lower court's decision.
This could work out very badly for The Donald, if he tries to repeat his previous spurious protests that he won despite losing.
 
I used to believe they based their decisions on the law and the constitution as opposed to politics and that is why they were elevated to SCOTUS.
 
Easy, non political questions of law get adjudicated in lower courts and the rulings stand. The SCOTUS answers political questions of law. Never so easy as just one or the other!
 
I used to believe they based their decisions on the law and the constitution as opposed to politics and that is why they were elevated to SCOTUS.

SCOTUS has been interfering with politics since Marbury v Madison.
 
Ok then, matters of law where perhaps redress is limited. Maybe in a HOA where local government services have been privatized. Less political even, such as speeding infractions. Of course, if you smear on top the real world and discretionary enforcement, everything is political. But some things less than more, enough to the point where a court is less frequently required to interpret the law new, merely apply it to a preexisting standard.
 

Ex-Trump Official Says Trump Is Hiding Extreme Positions While Campaigning​

William Wolfe, a former senior White House official and self-described Christian nationalist, said Trump’s policy agenda in a second term would be more “radical.”

A former White House official and prominent fundamentalist Christian said Donald Trump is “cloaking” his actual, “radical” beliefs on the campaign trail, and that a second Trump administration would see him “govern in a more conservative and more aggressive fashion.”

William Wolfe ― a self-described “Christian nationalist” who served under Trump as a deputy assistant secretary of defense at the Pentagon and as director of legislative affairs at the State Department ― made the remarks Thursday during a conversation on X Spaces, a live audio chat room on the platform formerly known as Twitter. Wolfe was among half a dozen panelists convened by editors at The Sentinel, a far-right digital media outlet, to discuss Trump’s stance on abortion.

The panelists were concerned that Trump had publicly criticized the Arizona Supreme Court’s decision to uphold an 1864 law banning nearly all abortions in the state. They were also perturbed about Trump’s claim that he would not support a federal abortion ban, Right Wing Watch first reported. But Wolfe argued that Trump — whose selections for the U.S. Supreme Court led to the 2022 overturning of Roe v. Wade, which had protected abortion rights in America — is hiding his actual position on many issues, including abortion.

“I actually think there’s wisdom in cloaking some of your power levels and maybe some of the things that you’re trying to do, and then once you secure power, and you have it, you govern in a more extreme position,” Wolfe said. “I think Trump is one of the first Republican candidates I’ve ever seen in my lifetime who has done that.” “Power levels,” a popular term in online far-right and white supremacist circles, refers to the degree of a person’s extremism or radicalization. It’s most often used when discussing the need to “hide your power levels” while infiltrating mainstream conservative and Republican organizations.

“I am confident with the people that I see lining up to be with Trump in a second term that regardless of what the rhetoric looks like during this campaign season, that he would actually govern in a more conservative and more aggressive fashion in the White House,” Wolfe said. “That’s something that I think we need to be comfortable with and maybe we should use ― maybe even some other conservative Republicans out there who want to run for office and gain power and use it to do radical scary conservative things should consider doing.”

The Trump campaign did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s request for comment on Wolfe’s remarks. Wolfe has intimate knowledge of at least one person heavily involved in shaping Trump’s potential second-term policy agenda. As reported by Politico, Wolfe has close ties to Russ Vought, president of the Center for Renewing America, a MAGA-aligned think tank that’s part of the consortium behind Project 2025, a blueprint for a radically conservative second Trump administration. Wolfe was a visiting fellow at CRA, and also worked alongside Vought at Heritage Action, another conservative policy advocacy group. “I’m proud to work with @William_E_Wolfe on scoping out a sound Christian Nationalism,” Vought tweeted in January 2023.

Vought’s plans for the Trump administration include infusing Christian nationalism into every level of government, according to documents obtained by Politico. Christian nationalism is based in the belief that America was founded as a Christian nation and that a far-right, fundamentalist interpretation of the Bible should guide policy agendas — a theocratic worldview that makes little room for equal governance in a diverse, pluralistic society.

Wolfe is a leading proponent of Christian nationalism in America, and has advocated for banning abortions, sex education in schools, same-sex marriage and no-fault divorces. He has also made anti-trans comments, once arguing that “it’s your moral and civic duty to ‘misgender’ a man pretending to be a woman.” In October, Wolfe appeared on “The Stew Peters Show,” a livestreamed talk show named for its host, a white supremacist and antisemite who frequently advocates for executing Democratic government officials. Wolfe argued on the show that Christian nationalists elected to office need to “exercise authority” in accordance with the Bible to save America from “globo-homo nationalism.”
Later that month, Wolfe told a crowd of Christians at a conference that they are “close” to a time when it’ll be necessary to take up arms in defense of their faith. “If we have ever lived in a point in time in American history since then that we could argue that now is the time to arms again, I think we are getting close,” Wolfe said, according to another report from Right Wing Watch. “Even though as

Christians we seek peace, when the enemy is pressed upon us, if we fail to heed the call to arms, then we are acting as cowards.” During the X Spaces conversation last week, Wolfe ― who at one point used a transphobic slur ― argued that the Biden administration is “possessed by legions of demons, Marxists and radicals” who hate Christians and “humanity itself.”

“What we’re up against is one of the most lawless, hostile and aggressive anti-Christian regimes that we have ever seen in our country to this point,” Wolfe said of President Joe Biden’s White House. In reality, Biden is a practicing Catholic.
“The Biden administration is ruthless,” Wolfe went on. “They will utilize the crushing and deadly power of the federal government, the national security apparatus, and the deep state to destroy you and your family without remorse. If you’re an outspoken, conservative Christian in this country, and you’re not walking around looking over your shoulder, wondering when the FBI might be coming to roll you up for your group chats or for your memes or for your advocacy for Christian values and causes in the country, you need to be.”

“I think [Biden] poses a civilizational threat to our country and the world,” he said.
 
Christians we seek peace, when the enemy is pressed upon us, if we fail to heed the call to arms, then we are acting as cowards.” During the X Spaces conversation last week, Wolfe ― who at one point used a transphobic slur ― argued that the Biden administration is “possessed by legions of demons, Marxists and radicals” who hate Christians and “humanity itself.”

“What we’re up against is one of the most lawless, hostile and aggressive anti-Christian regimes that we have ever seen in our country to this point,” Wolfe said of President Joe Biden’s White House. In reality, Biden is a practicing Catholic.
“The Biden administration is ruthless,” Wolfe went on. “They will utilize the crushing and deadly power of the federal government, the national security apparatus, and the deep state to destroy you and your family without remorse. If you’re an outspoken, conservative Christian in this country, and you’re not walking around looking over your shoulder, wondering when the FBI might be coming to roll you up for your group chats or for your memes or for your advocacy for Christian values and causes in the country, you need to be.”

“I think [Biden] poses a civilizational threat to our country and the world,” he said.
What a load of bollocks.
 
Joe "nothing will fundamentally change" Biden is a radical comulist! Nooo really guyys! Stop laughing!
You didint know? Biden is totalies a fifth coloumnist commie that sniffs Pinkie Pie at night! 🤪
 
I like how cotton candy smells.

Unamerican not to.
 

Trump was the more successful at advancing his agenda in a few areas. That includes the courts, in part by serendipity—he was handed the opportunity to appoint three Supreme Court justices to Biden’s one, and the pattern was similar for lower court appointments, as Caroline Fredrickson explains. On taxes, Trump’s 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is his biggest legislative success; Biden had a major win with the expanded child tax credit, but he couldn’t get the policy extended beyond one year. On social issues, Trump’s appointment of a conservative Supreme Court supermajority that overturned Roe v. Wade and affirmative action was a bigger deal than Biden’s expansion of LGBTQ and other civil rights protections.

In a handful of other areas, the two presidents tied. On immigration, for instance, Trump was politically punished for his cruelty at the border, while Biden’s gentler approach hasn’t fared much better, as Marc Novicoff reports.

In most areas of governance, however, Biden got more done than Trump—in many cases, vastly more. Trump signed $6 billion in new infrastructure spending, Biden $1.2 trillion. Trump’s national security achievements are dwarfed by Biden’s biggest success: leading the international alliance against Russia to support Ukraine and his related strengthening and expanding of NATO.

What’s behind Biden’s lapping of Trump in attainment? Partly, it’s the difference in party ambition: Democrats want to use government to advance their agenda, whereas Republicans want to block the Democrats’ agenda. Mostly, the difference in achievement reflects the character of the two men. As Bill Scher observes, Biden, a skilled and patient veteran lawmaker, worked more productively with members of the opposite party and thereby signed more—and more consequential—bills than Trump, an imperious hothead. Trump hired inexperienced ideologues to run his regulatory agencies, and when their proposals were challenged in court, they were overturned 77.5 percent of the time. The average for all presidents is 30 percent, as Rob Wolfe notes.
 

Lawmaker Accused of Forging Voters’ Names Resigns From Turning Point Action​

Austin Smith, a Republican in the Arizona House, also withdrew from his re-election bid on Thursday as his candidate petitions drew scrutiny in a constituent’s court complaint.

A senior director for the pro-Trump group Turning Point Action resigned from his post on Thursday and abruptly withdrew his re-election bid in Arizona, three days after being accused in a court complaint of forging voters’ signatures.
It was dramatic turnabout for Austin Smith, a House member in his first term representing parts of northwestern Maricopa County. He has been a vocal election skeptic in Arizona, a battleground state. On Monday, Mr. Smith was named in a complaint filed in state Superior Court by one of his constituents, a Democrat named James Ashurst, who said that dozens of signatures on Mr. Smith’s petitions to qualify for the July 30 Republican primary ballot had resembled Mr. Smith’s own handwriting.

Mr. Smith, 28, who has repeatedly attempted to sow doubt about the results of the 2020 election in Arizona, denied any wrongdoing in a post on social media on Thursday, but said he could not afford the financial burden of defending himself in protracted litigation. He said Democrats had engineered the complaint against him.

“If they could convince a judge that any one signature was forged, all of my signatures would be invalidated and I would get kicked off the ballot,” he wrote on X. “And as per Arizona law I would also be banned from seeking office for five years.” He added: “To protect my family today, I’ll withdraw as a candidate.”

Mr. Smith’s campaign website prominently features a section on election integrity and photos of him with former President Donald Trump and Kari Lake, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate who has refused to accept the results of the 2020 presidential election and her 2022 defeat in the governor’s race.

In a social media post last May, Mr. Smith impugned the process for checking voters’ signatures. “Signature verification in Maricopa County is a joke,” he said at the time. Mr. Smith did not immediately respond to requests on Friday for further comment. His resignation from Turning Point Action, which was first reported by The Washington Post, was confirmed by a spokesman for the group on Friday. The organization is a political arm of Turning Point USA, a pro-Trump grass-roots group focusing on millennial conservatives that was founded by Charlie Kirk. The Arizona secretary of state’s office said on Friday that it had referred the complaint, along with 12 other cases, to the Arizona attorney general’s office for review. Both positions are held by Democrats.

“The determination of fraud or forgery and potential charges is currently in the hands of the attorney general and those prosecutors,” Adrian Fontes, the secretary of state, said in a statement. A spokesman for Kris Mayes, the state’s attorney general, said on Friday that the office could not comment about a potential criminal investigation. Clint L. Hickman, a member of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and a Republican, who has faced threats for refusing to help Mr. Trump overturn his loss in Arizona during the 2020 election, said in a statement on Thursday that Mr. Smith should leave office.

“I’m not one to hold back or mince words so I will say what is as clear as day: House Representative Austin Smith should resign immediately,” he said. “This is a man who has lied to the people of Legislative District 29 and the entire state about our election operations for at least three years. And now he is accused of lying about the signatures he personally collected to get on the ballot again.” Several of the purported signers of Mr. Smith’s petitions stated that they had never given him their names, according to declarations that were included in the complaint.

“When caught red handed, his first reaction was to pretend he’s the victim and blame those who admirably stepped forward to say they hadn’t signed the petition,” Mr. Ashurst, the person who filed the complaint, said in a statement.

 
See! Election fraud! How can anyone possibly trust the results of our elections?:run:
 

Lawmaker Accused of Forging Voters’ Names Resigns From Turning Point Action​

Austin Smith, a Republican in the Arizona House, also withdrew from his re-election bid on Thursday as his candidate petitions drew scrutiny in a constituent’s court complaint.

A senior director for the pro-Trump group Turning Point Action resigned from his post on Thursday and abruptly withdrew his re-election bid in Arizona, three days after being accused in a court complaint of forging voters’ signatures.
It was dramatic turnabout for Austin Smith, a House member in his first term representing parts of northwestern Maricopa County. He has been a vocal election skeptic in Arizona, a battleground state. On Monday, Mr. Smith was named in a complaint filed in state Superior Court by one of his constituents, a Democrat named James Ashurst, who said that dozens of signatures on Mr. Smith’s petitions to qualify for the July 30 Republican primary ballot had resembled Mr. Smith’s own handwriting.

Mr. Smith, 28, who has repeatedly attempted to sow doubt about the results of the 2020 election in Arizona, denied any wrongdoing in a post on social media on Thursday, but said he could not afford the financial burden of defending himself in protracted litigation. He said Democrats had engineered the complaint against him.

“If they could convince a judge that any one signature was forged, all of my signatures would be invalidated and I would get kicked off the ballot,” he wrote on X. “And as per Arizona law I would also be banned from seeking office for five years.” He added: “To protect my family today, I’ll withdraw as a candidate.”

Mr. Smith’s campaign website prominently features a section on election integrity and photos of him with former President Donald Trump and Kari Lake, a Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate who has refused to accept the results of the 2020 presidential election and her 2022 defeat in the governor’s race.

In a social media post last May, Mr. Smith impugned the process for checking voters’ signatures. “Signature verification in Maricopa County is a joke,” he said at the time. Mr. Smith did not immediately respond to requests on Friday for further comment. His resignation from Turning Point Action, which was first reported by The Washington Post, was confirmed by a spokesman for the group on Friday. The organization is a political arm of Turning Point USA, a pro-Trump grass-roots group focusing on millennial conservatives that was founded by Charlie Kirk. The Arizona secretary of state’s office said on Friday that it had referred the complaint, along with 12 other cases, to the Arizona attorney general’s office for review. Both positions are held by Democrats.

“The determination of fraud or forgery and potential charges is currently in the hands of the attorney general and those prosecutors,” Adrian Fontes, the secretary of state, said in a statement. A spokesman for Kris Mayes, the state’s attorney general, said on Friday that the office could not comment about a potential criminal investigation. Clint L. Hickman, a member of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and a Republican, who has faced threats for refusing to help Mr. Trump overturn his loss in Arizona during the 2020 election, said in a statement on Thursday that Mr. Smith should leave office.

“I’m not one to hold back or mince words so I will say what is as clear as day: House Representative Austin Smith should resign immediately,” he said. “This is a man who has lied to the people of Legislative District 29 and the entire state about our election operations for at least three years. And now he is accused of lying about the signatures he personally collected to get on the ballot again.” Several of the purported signers of Mr. Smith’s petitions stated that they had never given him their names, according to declarations that were included in the complaint.

“When caught red handed, his first reaction was to pretend he’s the victim and blame those who admirably stepped forward to say they hadn’t signed the petition,” Mr. Ashurst, the person who filed the complaint, said in a statement.

This is the key...
Mr. Smith, 28, who has repeatedly attempted to sow doubt about the results of the 2020 election in Arizona
Projection, projection, projection... Republicans commit election fraud... so they then reason that Democrats must be doing it as well... because both sides are bad, you see. Plus since Democrats have to be worse, they must be, committing election fraud on a larger scale than what Republicans do, because well, that's what worse means.

See how that works?.
 
Or, you could just be gerrymandered your whole life and not be an idiot about what the Democrat is.

Edit: I love that this feels contentious to point out, when it's really one of those things that you need to ignore to pretend isn't there. "There are four lights."

One of my favorite political responses is when you've been talking politics with a new person for maybe 5 minutes or so, then you say something that skews a little on them, and you get the dubious, "wait, what are you?" I always answer the same way, "Methodist?" That part of the conversation actually yields a socially useful nonverbal response. :lol:
 
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Of course being gerrymandered in Illinois doesn't have anything to do with forging signatures in Arizona.

Nothing is contentious unless we want it to be... as @Ziggy Stardust has pointed out multiple times... nothing we say on these threads is making a difference in the election outcomes.

One of my favourite games to play in class was to take the conservative side of every argument to see it screw with people's pre-conceptions... "Wait, so you're...?:confused:" "No I just like playing devil's advocate":p Lmao... finally one of the Deans of the school took me aside and told me to stop confusing people on purpose. :lol: I'm selling her short BTW, she actually had some really good points, but I'll save those for another, more relevant conversation.
 
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