Well, you’ve got to hand it to them. The progressive left continues to find new and creative ways to ensure that President Donald Trump is not re-elected in 2020. At the state level, Democratic politicians are taking actions, such as passing legislation supporting the National Popular Vote compact, that are designed to prevent Republicans from maintaining control of the White House.
The Washington state senate has passed a measure that could keep the president off the ballot if the house also passes the bill. Illinois is also considering similar legislation. But will it succeed?
Washington Seeks to Bar Trump From Ballot
Recently, the Washington state senate passed a bill that would remove President Trump’s name from the presidential ballot if he does not release his tax returns. The legislation also would require future presidential candidates to make five years of tax returns public before running in a primary or general election.
Washington’s attorney general and solicitor wrote a letter to state lawmakers stating that the measure is “likely Constitutional” but that it “would definitely be challenged in court.” State Sen. Patty Kuderer (D) argued that the proposed law is designed to return presidential races to a sense of normalcy. “Although releasing tax returns has been the norm for about the last 40 years in presidential elections, unfortunately we’ve seen that norm broken,” she told CBS.
While her argument might seem legitimate, it would sound much different translated into progressivese, more like, “Look, we’re just doing this because we’re desperate. I mean, have you seen the field of potential Democratic nominees for 2020?”
Naturally, state Republicans are taking issue with the proposed measure. Sen. Hans Zeiger told CBS, “We’re on really risky ground when we’re trying to place conditions on a federal election.”
Washington isn’t the only state considering such a proposal. Both Illinois and New Jersey are attempting to pass similar bills.
Are They Getting Desperate?
Progressives have been melting down over the president’s tax returns since the 2016 campaign. Democrats in the House of Representatives have threatened to investigate Trump’s tax records, hoping to find — or manufacture — a scandal involving criminal activity. And nobody can forget MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow’s epic snafu when she revealed a leaked copy of one year of the president’s tax returns that showed a whole lotta nothing.
But there is a problem: No law exists mandating that presidential candidates release their tax records. Indeed, it has been a tradition only since President Richard Nixon decided to release his returns during his campaign. The constitutionality of such legislation would certainly be in question given the fact that it could be seen as an attempt to prevent voters from choosing the candidate they want. Moreover, anyone can see that this is motivated by politics and not by a desire for normalcy.
Either way, this action is not likely to do much harm to Trump’s campaign and could backfire on the Democrats. Only staunch leftists would believe that these proposals are not cynical ploys designed to influence the general election. If the Democrats wish to defeat President Trump, they will have to do it the old-fashioned way — through better campaigning and superior policy arguments.
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