Throughout American history, when a president has lost re-election, he has always stepped down willingly. Accepting the will of the people, and allowing a peaceful transition of power, is a hallmark of American democracy.
But today, Trump routinely ignores democratic norms and continues to chip away at democratic institutions. In 2016, Trump repeatedly threatened not to accept the election results, and Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen has warned Congress that “given my experience working for Mr. Trump, I fear that if he loses the election in 2020, there will never be a peaceful transition of power.” Most recently, Trump even threatened to “deploy the United States military” against the American people to quash peaceful protests. There is no line he won’t cross.
With COVID-19 poised to wreak havoc for months to come, the threat to our democracy is particularly acute. As Congress works to expand mail-in voting and in-person early voting, we must prevent Trump from using this moment to sow discord, confusion, and doubt on the November election results.
We cannot ignore the threat that Trump poses to our democracy and a peaceful transition. We will stand together to ensure that if Trump loses the 2020 presidential election he will not throw our country into a constitutional crisis. We will honor the valid results of the 2020 election, ensure that every vote is counted, and show up to demand that the losing candidate put their ego aside and concede for the good of our country.