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August 10, 2016


There is beginning to be some internet chatter to the effect that Trump may pull out of the race for president. That would be a first, but then we have seen a lot of firsts in his bizarre campaign, e.g., women are pigs, lying Hillary talk and other insults to military heroes and Democrats and Republicans alike, so who’s to know whether this man may pull out of the race and leave the Republicans hanging. They will be hanging because even if they do come up with a substitute candidate in such an event, there are several states where their new candidate (Cruz, Pence or whomever) would not appear on the ballot. Why?

Well, contrary to the Supreme Court’s grounds for its holding in Bush v. Gore which, among other things, triggered my resignation from the Supreme Court bar, states are constitutionally in charge of running and rule-making for elections, including federal elections held in the particular state, and guess what? States have cutoff dates for certification of candidates who will be running in November, and some dates have passed already in some states and cutoff dates in others, including the crucial state of Ohio, will be passing shortly. Trump is, of course, destined to lose in any event barring a miracle, but if he pulls out his substitute will not get a single vote in such a state! Why? The substitute’s name will not appear on a particular state’s ballot as a result of having missed the cutoff date.

But, the discerning reader may say, the states whose time has run or is about to run on certification can call special legislative sessions and change the dates so that the substitute candidate can be legally certified for fall election, and that is true, but there is a problem. Democratic states and Republican states with Democratic governors are unlikely to bother. Republican states with Democratic governors have a twin problem, i.e. (1) getting the governor to call a special session, and (2) avoiding a veto of their change in certification time (unless they have the votes to override it). If Trump quits the race it is clear to me that his successor candidate will lose far more badly than Trump had he stayed in the race.

I think it is unlikely that Trump will abandon the race, though he might as well, given his numbers. Unless there is a miracle, he is going to lose by historic proportions, perhaps not by FDR’s 1936 numbers (46 out of the then 48 states) but more like the margin in LBJ’s 1964 victory. His electoral ship is sinking, and many of his crew (Republican Senator Susan Collins is the latest) are abandoning ship. Hillary’s numbers are surging and his are going south. Barring a miracle, that race is over.

Let’s take a look at the likelihood that he would or would not quit and the reasons why he might. I think he will not as he enjoys the notoriety and the supposed power of being the candidate for president of a major political party irrespective of his braggadocio, insulting personality and inability to extend common courtesies to others in both formal and informal social situations due to self-love (narcissism).

I have blogged earlier that it may be that he doesn’t really want to win, and that he can do and say anything he pleases in pursuit of this non-goal. I have also suggested that he knows in his heart of hearts that he is grossly unfit for the job in one section of his brain but that another section of his brain (the one containing his narcissistic mindset) overrules such section as he plods ahead to his electoral fate. I am guessing without knowing that his is a tormented mind, or would be in a mentally-balanced person.

So will he quit or not? I am guessing that he will not, but trying to figure what this guy may do next is beyond my pay grade since I’m a lawyer, not a shrink, and wouldn’t be surprised one way or the other, not that the net effect would be different one way or the other, since from all indications either he or his stand-in will suffer big time defeat in November. Will he or won’t he quit? I don’t have a clue. Who can know?    GERALD     E


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