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The Electors Duty—For Such a Time as This

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This past July I read a story by Lisa Bloom entitled “Why the New Child Rape Case Filed Against Trump Should Not Be Ignored.  It came to my mind recently when I saw the headline “Woman Claiming Trump Rape at 13 Releases video.  I watched the video, and read the linked Independent Journal Review article by Kayla Brandon, reporting its release.

Trump has strenuously denied the woman’s account, saying that “There is absolutely no merit to these allegations. Period.”  Referring to Jeffery Epstein’s alleged role in the events the woman describes, the article reports that “Representatives for Trump have also said he and Epstein ‘barely knew each other’.  But the a media nemesis of Mr. Trump, the Daily Beast, reports the pair were regularly seen together in the ‘90s.”  An article about Epstein, published online by New York magazine, quotes a remark from Trump that also seems inconsistent with the contention that they were barely acquainted:

Epstein likes to tell people that he’s a loner, a man who’s never touched alcohol or drugs, and one whose nightlife is far from energetic. And yet if you talk to Donald Trump, a different Epstein emerges. “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump booms from a speakerphone. “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it — Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

The statement “He’s a lot of fun to be with.”, seems to be drawn from personal experience.  It conveys the impression that Donald Trump is someone who consorted with Jeffery Epstein enough to correct the impression Epstein gives of himself.  Moreover, in the context of the allegation made in his accuser’s testimony, Trump’s reference to Epstein’s taste for women “on the younger side” gives pause.

Epstein is a once convicted pedophile, who has reportedly paid settlements to quiet allegations of sexual assault in more than a few cases.  Are Trump’s word’s evidence that he had personal knowledge of Epstein’s predilection?  At the very least, they force us to pause and reflect. And those reflections include seriously weighing the need for further inquiry.

What if the allegations against are true, and someone holds solid evidence that they are true?  That fact would give such a person the power to mire Mr. Trump’s Presidency in a sensational scandal, a scandal that could force his resignation from office.  Given that prospect, would not the person or persons who controlled such evidence be able to coerce President Trump’s decisions?

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are on the verge of occupying the highest office in the land. That office represents America’s reliability and character to the entire world.  The revelations about Hillary Clinton raise serious concerns about whether she can be trusted to deal with life and death security issues that affect the American people (as well as and our allies and friends around the world). In like fashion, the possibility that Mr. Trump is also disposed to abuse power must greatly concern to Americans, as well as allies and friends of America, who value this nation’s critical contribution to the defense and promotion of just and decent liberty.

People obliged to consider all of this from the perspective of Christ are especially called to share this concern.  If the allegations against Trump and Clinton, respectively, are true, both represent a threat to the special nature of humanity that goes beyond material life and circumstance.  They recall to mind Christ’s command to His followers: “Do not fear those who can kill the body, but have no power to kill the soul.   Fear rather the one who has power utterly to destroy both soul and body in Hellfire (Gehenna).” (Matthew 10:28)

Ultimately, God alone has power to destroy both body and soul.  The Scripture also tells us that “the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all the impiety and injustice of the human beings who unjustly hold back the truth, inasmuch as the manifest knowledge of God is in them.” (Romans 1:18, cf. Romans 2:15) When evidence of crucial facts and the testimony of multiple witnesses go unexamined, the course of justice is thwarted, calling forth God’s wrath. 

Allegations of misconduct that, if true, must utterly disqualify both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump from the Presidency, have come up in this election.  The information needed to evaluate them has apparently been withheld or neglected. The travesty is that, instead of informing voters with properly vetted facts and testimony, an effort is being made to stampede them into casting their ballots out of   fear, anger and revulsion, rather than conscientious deliberation.  This not only contravenes what is just and right for individuals, it ill serves our common good as a nation.

Worst of all, we are being misled into believing that we have no choice but to accept this unjust constraint upon our sovereign judgment.  We are being told we have no choice but to put one or the other of these possibly criminal malefactors into the White House.  This is a self-evident lie.  Constitutionally speaking, the votes we cast on November 8th do not count toward the election of the President. They count toward the election of the Electors in whom the Constitution vests the actual power to select the President (and Vice President) of the United States.

We are often told that the Electors must vote for the Party nominee they have pledged to support.  But the Constitution knows nothing of such partisanship.  It simple requires that “each State… appoint, in such manner as the legislature thereof may direct, a number of electors…”.  Thus, the State governments are called upon to decide what selection process will be.  But the Constitution makes no mention of any power in the State governments, to enforce this or that choice upon the electors once they are selected.  It vests the decision making power their vote represents wholly in the individual Electors themselves.

This leaves them free to do what they conscientiously conclude the good of the nation requires.  If damning accusations are made at the last minute, when there is no time to investigate and evaluate them properly, the Electors are therefore at liberty to act as the nation’s search committee. Disregarding all considerations but their nation’s good, they may select whatever person they conscientiously believe will represent the character, rights and good prospects of the American people. Given the questionable characters, uncertain information and heedless partisanship with which we are contending in this election year, isn’t this duty of Electoral independence the remedy exactly suited for such a time as this?

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