The widening implications will likely depend on whether the results show there has been significant discrepancy or fraud, whether those results are credible and believable, and whether the press actually covers the story and public opinion shifts.
Once Republicans believe they have a solid case, then strategies will need to be developed to go into the political and legal unknown where there is a great political risk for this already badly divided country. There is little precedent for what to do and many will argue that it is better to “let sleeping dogs lie” until the next election. However, a better case can be made that the lying dogs who perpetrated election fraud should never be allowed to sleep.
Should legislators in various states simply fix the election procedures and processes? Should those that engaged in fraud be prosecuted? What happens to those already in office? What happens to the legislation illegitimate leaders have passed?
The problem is there are obviously partisan reasons for either believing or not believing. You can expect partisan fury will attempt to overwhelm evidence and procedure.
Right now, we are at the point of a discrepancy, which is itself an important milestone. But if Maricopa County officials continue to block the investigation, it will be argued that it was not complete and credibility will be reduced. Ironically, at least in Arizona, it is Republicans that will determine whether this election integrity project has credibility.
As we have come this far that many believe the election was fraudulent, and we are at least at the point of a discrepancy, it is alarming the Board of Supervisors should continue to block a legitimate inquiry conducted by elected representatives. This story affects the whole state and the nation, and they are mere county officials, albeit elected as well.
For the sake of party unity if not the integrity of the democratic process, they should go along with this investigation, especially if they have done nothing wrong. If no wrongdoing occurred, they will be able to make their opponents look like idiots.
If they have done wrong, it is not worth destroying the electoral reputation of this great Republic just to save the political hides of county officials. We should remember their names for sure for the next election cycle, and see that they are all removed, hopefully in the primary stage of the election cycle.
But in the interim, maybe a bargain should be struck. Come clean and cooperate and no one gets prosecuted.
We need to break out of the conundrum formed by those that opposed the investigation in the first place. They will contend, no credible evidence has been developed, while all along blocking the path to develop the credible evidence.
It is similar to the “the courts have found no evidence of fraud”, when in most cases the courts refused to even hear the case as they claimed that plaintiffs had “no standing”.
Just for the sake of intellectual speculation, let’s assume that results do show “significant” fraud, that is fraud on a sufficient scale to alter the results of a close election.
Let’s further assume that results are considered supportable. That could be a hard sell since we have few examples of true audits rather than just recounts by the same officials that may have been conducting the fraud. There are few examples of outside parties actually not just counting the ballots, but verifying the ballots that are being counted. Thus, we don’t have a lot of precedents.
Arizona may be setting a new precedent.
A recount is not enough. Recounting fraudulent ballots simply cannot tell you which are fraudulent and those that are not. It might find if there are issues of mechanical counting errors or improper or inaccurate counting, but counting illegitimate ballots simply gives you a tally of illegitimate ballots mixed in with proper ballots.
Recounts can’t determine if voters were not citizens, or have moved, are deceased, or if the chain of custody was compromised, or if machines are internally or externally manipulated.
But assuming the conclusions of fraud are supportable, will the mainline press bury the story? Probably not, although they have buried other big stories that offend Democrats like Hunter Biden. Can they, in the end, truly bury this story?
So, let’s assume significant fraud is determined, the means and methods of determining said are supportable and accepted by the majority of voters. And we assume, the press can’t ultimately deep-six the story. It gets widespread coverage and more states copy Arizona and look into their elections as well and similar things are found.
Now, what happens? Republicans will be in the position of the “dog that caught the bus”, to wit, what do you do with it once you have it? One does not get the sense they have a plan that is thought through to its full logical implications.
Obviously, the people in office, are in office. In this case, given the Democrat party’s ability to unite and the Republican party’s ability to fragment, nothing is likely to happen until the next election cycle. I doubt Democrats will step down, even if it is determined they are illegitimate officeholders.
However, it would appear Democrats are putting out signs of desperation. Midterm elections don’t go well historically in any case, and in this particular case, with fraud, dementia, DOJ collusion, inflation, their created border crisis, the critical race theory they embrace, a crime way they caused, and illegitimacy issues dogging them; they act like they want to stuff the channel with as much radical legislation as possible. They must fear a short tenure.
Assuming this plays out, the Democrats will lose the House and Senate at the mid-term election, but maintain the Executive Branch and the fourth branch of government, the bureaucratic establishment.
Then what do the Republicans do especially if the courts continue to run from the issue? Clearly, under the Constitution, state legislatures ultimately are in charge of election procedures and processes.
For those in office that benefited from election fraud, impeachment would be in order. But if mid-term elections are not decisive, we are stuck with a full Democrat presidential term and all the executive orders and legislation that got through in the first two years and executive orders in the final two years. The Democrats would surely be wounded, but they will have crammed through their desired radical legislation nonetheless.
Biden is already using Executive Orders at a faster pace than any previous President, as well.
Assuming in four years, Republicans have both the Executive and Legislative branches, then what?
We saw what happened when they had that situation with George Bush, and it was not impressive was it? So, Republican leaders need to develop a clear strategy if election fraud is determined.
Conservatives should not brook any talk of a military coup or this kind of nonsense. Our guide has to be the Constitution, but not necessarily tradition.
Democrats will have to be removed either by impeachment or preferably, elections. Hopefully, honest elections. That means election integrity is essential for constitutional remedies to work. Election integrity is not a threat to the republic, continued election fraud is.
That means at a minimum, the GOP must have the courage to pursue a course that ensures election integrity in as many states as politically possible.
The minimum effort would be the least disruptive I suppose, but what then do Republicans do if they come back into power?
My own preference would be to see that every piece of legislation and executive order be legally repealed going back to say…Grover Cleveland.
But seriously, we should want to repeal anything put in place by a government that was formed on the basis of fraud and deceit. It would indeed be undemocratic to let stand legislation that was put in place by individuals not properly elected. To honor laws written by illegitimate politicians is certainly a greater affront to democracy than questioning an election.
Then, some important people need to go to jail.
As far as the bureaucratic agencies, clean house. If that requires modifying civil service laws, then that will be necessary.
Read The Arizona Election Audit and Its Implications – Part I here.
As we move through 2023 and into the next election cycle, The Prickly Pear will resume Take Action recommendations and information.