On Sunday, CNN host Fareed Zakaria spoke of the fears swirling around the possibility of Donald Trump refusing to leave office, Raw Story reported. While discussing this possibility, the journalist argued that the head of state could remain in power without winning at the ballot box.
“But the terrifying reality is that there are also mechanisms that are legal and constitutional that could enable Trump to stay in office without actually winning the vote,” he said.
The host noted that the United States’ electoral system “was not designed to be democratic” and ultimately places power into the hands of states to determine its outcome.
“Imagine the scenario during election week: Trump is leading on November 3, but Joe Biden pulls ahead in the days following, Republicans file objections to tens of thousands of mail-in ballots, Democrats file counter-suits. Taking account of the confusion, legislators decide to choose electors themselves.”
Zakaria noted that eight of the nine swing states have Republican legislatures, and if balloting is chaotic and marred by irregularities, these regions could push their desired outcome by designating GOP electors. From here, these electors could dispute votes in some regions and invalidate them.
In this case, the CNN host noted that it’s possible neither candidate would get to 270 electoral votes, which would then place the decision into the hands of the House of Representatives. However, each state only casts a single ballot, which means with the current numbers — 26 Republican state delegations, 23 Democratic, and 1 tied — Trump would win.
“Trump doesn’t need to do anything other than to simply accept this outcome, which is constitutional,” the writer said.
The scenario proposed by Zakaria isn’t new. As The Inquisitr reported, Breitbart senior-editor-at-large, Joel B. Pollak, previously speculated about a similar possibility. Pollak took the scenario a step further, suggesting that Democrats could prevent Trump from being re-elected by the Lower Chamber by denying the quorum, which he acknowledged would be difficult to sustain indefinitely. However, if it were held up until January, Pollak pointed to the 20th amendment, which says that the vice president would become acting president until a leader is selected.
Another proposal was floated by publishing executive Steve Forbes and leads to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi becoming acting U.S. leader. In this situation, neither possible vice president — Mike Pence or Kamala Harris — secures enough of an Electoral College victory by January 20. According to the Constitution, Pelosi would be next-in-line for the presidency until a leader is appointed to the White House.