Ep.54 POLITICAL SCIENCE FICTION: WHAT IF THE ELECTION IS DELAYED?

What if the 2020 election was delayed or cancelled? Haven and I take on this scary, and not-out-of-the-question, possibility . . .

The mechanics of a delay or a cancellation are complicated. Here are three good articles for context on the topic from:

Anthony Fisher, from Business Insider (“We need a backup plan to ensure all Americans can vote in November’s presidential election. Our democracy could depend on it.”) and . . .

https://www.businessinsider.com/coronavirus-we-need-backup-plan-voting-november-presidential-election-2020-4

Ian Millhiser from Vox (‘Can Trump Cancel the Election?”)

https://www.vox.com/2020/3/21/21188152/trump-cancel-november-election-constitution-coronavirus

Haven Pell on the Pundificator (World War Three at a Time)

Here is an outline of the potential chaos.

Fighting The Three Political Wars and where an Electoral Dysfunction may fit in . . .

  • Novel Coronavirus / Covid-19
    • ~1.8/2.0 MM cases in the world 525k/550k in the US
    • ~110,000 deaths in the world 20,000 in the US
    • Limited testing
    • Vaccines a long way off
    • Continuing though perhaps diminishing fear
    • Generally good compliance with lockdown, social distancing etc.
    • Dueling Daily Trump and Cuomo briefings.
    • Discussion politicized
      • R’s lean toward reopening
      • D’s lean toward public safety
      • People’s lives vs. the stock market
  • Reopening the Country
    • 16 MM filed for unemployment in three weeks.
    • Highest by a multiple of 10
    • Stock Market down
      • 36% peak to trough (2/19-3/23)
      • 21% peak to today (2/19-4/9)
      • Same today as June 2019, April 2018, November 2017
    • Significant concerns about small businesses e.g. restaurants
    • Significant and disruptive long-term changes possible to highly likely
      • Remote work
      • Resiliency of supply chains over cost
      • Anti-globalist sentiment
      • Business travel
      • Tourism
    • When country reopens how fast will people/customers come back
  • Politics / Elections
    • D primaries essentially fizzled out when Sanders withdrew
    • Biden 49% Trump 43% RCP Average
    • Democrats hate Trump more than almost any other President ever
    • Republicans hammering Biden for gaffes, mental infirmities
    • No traditional campaigning during lockdown
    • Conventions – will they happen? Do they need to?
      • Ds Milwaukee 8/17-20
      • Rs Charlotte 8/24-27
      • Who wants to bring thousands of potentially infected travelers into a swing state?
  • There are 535 House members and Senators plus the presidential and vice-presidential candidates. Only 1/3 of the Senate runs, but assume each seat is contested. Eleven governors are up for election
    • House = 435 x 2 = 870
    • Senate = 33 x 2 = 66
    • President Vice President = 2 x 2 = 4
    • Governors 11 x 2 = 22
    • Total candidates = 962
    • Countless candidates for state legislative seats
  • Since political candidates tend to be older and since they might not be observing public health guidelines, what are the odds on at least one if not several dying during the campaign?
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