In less than a week, Americans will be asked to choose between the two most hated presidential candidates in recent history and the result could send the country reeling like a drunk on St. Patrick’s Day.
Stock prices have fallen for seven straight days because investors fear the fallout of Election Day and groups on both sides of the aisle have announced their intention to be out monitoring voters come Nov. 8.
No matter what the outcome of the election, some people will be angry; the question is how far will they go to express their outrage?
Donald Trump has threatened not to accept the election results leading some of his supporters, like 50-year-old contractor Dan Bowman, to consider revolting against the government, reports the Boston Globe.
“If she’s in office [Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton] I hope we can start a coup. She should be in prison or shot.”
The Republican nominee has managed to convince many conservative voters the only way Clinton could win would be to rig the election, which would outrage conservatives like Florida resident Bill Stelling, according to the New York Times.
“I guarantee you it’s not even going to be close. The only way they’ve done it is by rigging the election.”
Trump supporters aren’t the only ones acting out violently. Clinton voters have also been spotted stealing Republican lawn signs, spray painting cars outside a Trump rally, assaulting conservatives and firebombing a GOP campaign headquarters in North Carolina, Hillsborough Mayor Tom Stevens told CNBC.
“This highly disturbing act goes far beyond vandalizing property. It willfully threatens our [community’s] safety via fire, and its hateful message undermines decency, respect and integrity in civic participation.”
Already, liberal and conservative groups are planning to monitor the polls on Election Day to protect voters from each other, and pundits like Dave Hodges are predicting widespread violence when American goes to the polls.
Trump’s talk of a rigged election has conservatives promising to monitor the polls to stop any voter fraud they see happening, election guru Rick Hasen told the Washington Post.
“It’s very common to have people at the polls. What’s different is that he is couching it in an incendiary way by saying ‘Crooked Hillary’ wants to steal the election. That seems to be an invitation to go and make trouble.”
In response to the threat of voter intimidation, minority groups are also promising to monitor the polls in places like Philadelphia and Cleveland to ensure a free and fair election, Rev. Alyn E. Waller told the Los Angeles Times.
“If anyone comes around to do anything that would deter from the free, fair opportunity to vote, we will shut that down.”
With both Republicans and Democrats eyeing each other with suspicion and everyday citizens promising to respond with violence, it’s easy to see how this November’s Election Day could turn bloody.
In a rather dark scenario, some pundits are even predicting a dystopian future America destroyed by political passions after the election.
Imagine a world where Trump loses the election but refuses to admit defeat, goes on the radio like Rush Limbaugh and continues to urge his supporters to commit violence in his name.
A newly elected President Clinton might be forced to declare martial law to reign in the lawlessness and impose a curfew to halt the violence. The impending chaos could shutter business nationwide and bring the economy to a grinding halt.
Whatever the outcome of the 2016 election, it’s better for both sides to accept the outcome and continue the peaceful transfer of power America is founded on.
What do you think about predictions of Election Day violence?
[Featured Image Max Becherer/AP Images]