It's important to remember that an estimated 71 million Americans voted for Trump, and 76 million voted for President-elect Joe Biden. Our country remains just as divided, if not more so, than in 2016. But research shows that such divisiveness isn't enough fodder for a civil war. As the Washington Post explained, while Americans are at odds with each other civil wars usually happen when "the state is weak. " In other words, when both the country has high poverty rates and it lacks the law enforcement and military capabilities to control armed rebellions.
Others are less optimistic that a civil war isn't on the horizon. Salon's Chauncey DeVega recently interviewed Richard Kreitner, who writes for The Nation. "The United States never resolved the first civil war, " Kreitner said. "The idea of a second civil war has been around literally since within months of the end of the first one. Too many Americans do not appreciate that fact. " He continued: Trump is trying to keep his base engaged for political reasons, some political scientists suspect. However, claiming voter fraud falsely still undermines democracy.
"By all appearances, yes it looks like Trump is trying to reverse the outcome of elections that by all accounts had equal monitoring of ballot counting by Republicans and Democrats, and in states where the Chief Election Officer is a Republican (GA, NV), " Wendy Schiller, chair of Brown University's political science department, told The Boston Globe. "As unrealistic as these efforts are, they are a direct attack on the fundamental system of elections. "
The appearance of what Trump is doing matters most to the GOP, Schiller argues.
"Everything Mitch McConnell is doing and saying is about keeping the Trump voters enraged enough to get out in full force for those Senate seats, " Schiller wrote, referencing the upcoming runoff elections for both Senate seats in Georgia.
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