Photo © 2016 by Daniel Oines [CC BY 2.0]
The entire issue brought up in Mickey Edwards’ essay on Donald Trump possibly not accepting the results of the campaign election may be truly frightening to some people. After all, change scares people, and this is truly a change in the political landscape. In reading up on this topic, I’ve come to connect it with something I recently learned in U.S. History. Known as “The Revolution of 1800,” the election of Thomas Jefferson as president marked the first example of a peaceful transition of power and office between to diametrically opposed political parties, the Federalists and the Republicans.
Ever since then, America has followed the precedent set by John Adams and Thomas Jefferson in always accepting the results of the vote. Now, however, it looks as if Donald Trump might uproot this unspoken tradition and cause a massive shift, if not the end, of the contemporary nature of American Democracy.
Update: Now that Donald Trump has been elected president, we see that the tradition is still in place and is indeed doing its job. President Obama has officially stated he will try his best to make the transition as smooth as possible as Bush did for him. In addition, the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, has officially conceded the election and has congratulated Trump on cinching the electoral votes. All is well, right? Not quite. Despite the politicians upholding the precedent, the people are reacting quite differently. I have another post detailing my thoughts on this issue.